Mark B. Ledenbach's vintage Halloween collectibles blog.


Wow, this is a rare variant of a common tambourine. I think this is the second time I've seen this in 25 years. I bought the one in my collection in an odd lot through Bertoia years ago. There isn't a mark anywhere. The rim is decorated with a repeating pattern of fairly nondescript jack-o-lanterns. My guess is that this was made in Japan in the early 1950s with their then casual disregard for other manufacturers' designs. "Borrowing" like this was, essentially, a quick way to make a buck. That said, in adapting the original design from T. Cohn, I feel the interlopers made some interesting choices in improving upon the original. My theory is that T. Cohn must have made a stink, was successful in removing this item from the marketplace, making this particular tambourine quite rare.