Note: This is an archive of "Papa" Ted Althof's online tribute to cardboard Christmas "putz" houses and their history. At Ted's request, this archive was established in early 2012. Except for critical updates and announcements, it will remain as Ted left it in October, 2012.
For more information, please scroll to the bottom of the page.

*House of the Month*
- 2000 -


Christmas village putz house castles

Left: -7" X 4 1/4" X 7 5/8" high.......Right: -5 5/8" X 3 1/4" X 9 1/2" high.
I have never been quite sure whether these are truly Christmas houses or were part of inexpensive medieval playsets with knight figures and so on. The one of the left was found in with a big boxful of the standard type Christmas houses at a flea market about 15 years ago, however, and no knight-figures were among the contents of that box. The construction is typical of the Christmas houses and the encircled purple "MADE IN JAPAN" stamping on the bottom pretty much clinches them as prewar.(The other houses were all prewar, too.) These are hard to find. The tree in the picture is 10 1/2" high for comparison.
(Papa Ted's personal collection)

Christmas village putz house

Ca. 1930/31 House

with Exceptional Balcony and hand-painted early figure detail in full "coconut" finish. Note the 3 doors! and the slotted full-surround fence.
From the Tucson Collection

Christmas village putz house Christmas village putz house

1930 Pre-"coconut" 2-story beauty.

The slotted style balcony fence and rafia ground hedge and especially the "printie" style roof of the side building would put this into the 1928-31 period. And sure enough..
....we have the fortune to have the date written on the bottom by the hand of the original purchaser.......
TheTucson Collection takes it yet again for June!

Christmas village putz house


Unusual Czechoslovakian large house, Ca.1950.
We are used to seeing the exquisite little Czechoslovakian house ornaments, but not something like this! Slightly over 10" wide and about that high, this one is semi 3-dimensional on a flat carboard background suggesting winter trees. My guess is that it was intended as a mantel piece. Whatever the intent, it fills spots in a putz in ways that a fully 3-dimensional house could not. I date it to the late 40's/early 50's by the style of price tag used. ...and it was clearly meant to be illuminated. Only one of this kind I have ever seen.
Papa Ted Collection

UPDATE, 2005! A find has turned up on eBay just recently that reveals that this big church is the capital piece of a set from the 1940s. The auction winner has kindly shared three more pieces with us. Click on the button to see more...

Christmas village putz house

August, 2K:
Medium Giant "coconut," ca. 1931-32.

This is a BIG one! 9 1/2 by 7 3/4" ! - and a beauty! I was not quite sure about that balcony, at first, but ..... Our anonymous contributor assured me that's how it was found and I have since seen a few other examples of that very heavy textured paint effect. Really rather rare. We learn from others, is the lesson here...

Christmas village putz house Christmas village putz house

September, - 2K:
Incredible round "facade" upper story "coconut" -ca. 1930-'33.

This is not in MY collection, and it's driving me crazy; I WANT ONE!!!!

Christmas village putz house
Exceptional piece from '30-'32 with dual everything!..
Dual wings, dual trees - even dual trunks on the trees. Beautiful in design,colors, and condition! These are found also with a church steeple in the center - legitimate either way. This particular specimen had no glue marks where a steeple had broken off. The paint was solid and unperturbed, and that's how you can tell.

Christmas village putz house

November, 2K

Ca.1929-31 "Super-Lacquer"

An amazing example of this very rare classification of Christmas House.
To see and read more about this fabulous class, check the

section -under: The LACQUERS

(Papa Ted Collection)

Christmas village putz house Christmas village putz house

December, 2K:

Semi giant full coconut (9" X 5.5" X 5" high) in truly like new condition! Oh, that we could find them all this way! The price was pencil-marked on the bottom "50 c." then crossed out and changed to "25 c." It probably hadn't sold and was picked up as an after-Christmas bargain. This and the style of construction and the highly hand-detailed and rare snow-baby figure place it Ca. 1932 A remarkable survival! It must have been kept in storage and not have seen the light of day in 70 years! Perhaps it was bought that way, put back somewhere and just forgotten. It has waited in the dark in through all those years -
- now to shine at last as our -
*** STAR OF CHRISTMAS - 2,000 !! ***
...before the entire world.
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Christmas holly bar graphic

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Copyright 2000-2012 Theodore H. Althof,Jr.Except where noted, the contents of this website and all it's pages and submissions therein contained are the intellectual property of Theodore H.Althof,Jr. All rights are reserved. (Background musical selections are,of course, excepted.)

This archive was set up at Ted's request in early 2012, and, except for critical updates and
announcements, will remain as Ted left it in October, 2012.
The archive is kept online with the help of volunteers from the following affiliated sites and resources:
- Christmas Memories and Collectibles -
Visit the FamilyChristmasOnline site. Visit our collection of resources for collecting, restoring, and making your own cardboard Christmas houses. Return to the OldChristmasTreeLights Welcome page Visit Howard Lamey's glitterhouse gallery, with free project plans, graphics, and instructions. Visit Papa Ted Althof's extensive history and collection of putz houses, the largest and most complete such resource on the Internet. Craft and collectibles blog with local news of Croton NY.
- Family Activities and Crafts -
Click to see reviews of our favorite family-friendly Christmas movies. Free, Family-Friendly Christmas Stories Decorate your tree the old-fashioned way with these kid-friendly projects. Free plans and instructions for starting a hobby building vintage-style cardboard Christmas houses. Free building projects for your vintage railroad or Christmas village. Click to find free, family-friendly Christmas poems and - in some cases - their stories.
- Trains and Hobbies -
Visit the Internet's largest resource on choosing and displaying Christmas trains. Visit Lionel Trains. Click to see Thomas Kinkaded-inspired Holiday Trains and Villages.
Learn about backyard railroading with Family Garden Trains
Click to see HO scale trains with your favorite team's colors.
Resources for O gauge and On30 model railroading
- Music -
Carols of many countries, including music, lyrics, and the story behind the songs Wax recordings from the early 1900s, mostly collected by George Nelson.  Download them all for a 'period' album.
Best-loved railroad songs and the stories behind them.
Heartland-inspired music, history, and acoustic instrument tips. Own a guitar, banjo, or mandolin?  Want to play an instrument?  Tips to save you money and time, and keep your instrument playable.
The struggles and influences of early Jesus Musicians and others who laid the groundwork for the Christian music and worship that is part of our lives today.