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Throwing ourselves into Yo-Yo Heritage Month

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Mon, 30 Mar 2015 18:14:42 +0000
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<div class="field field-name-body field-type-text-with-summary field-label-hidden"><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even"> <p><strong>April Fool's!</strong>&nbsp;It is&nbsp;<strong>not</strong>&nbsp;Yo-yo Heritage Month, so we unfortunately will&nbsp;<strong>not</strong>&nbsp;be sharing yo-yo facts all month. But we do have a few for you today!</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="media-image" height="245" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/faux%20yo%20final.jpg?itok=aUUPGA_m" /></p><p>The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.toyhalloffame.org/toys/duncan-yo-yo">origins</a>&nbsp;of toys like yo-yos are said to stretch way back to ancient Greece or China, but it is believed that the yo-yo we know today comes from the Philippines, where "yo-yo" means "come come" in one of the local languages. The popularity of the toy in America began growing in the 1920s, when a Filipino bellhop at a Southern California hotel, Pedro Flores, attracted attention with his yo-yo tricks on his breaks. Seeing an opportunity, Flores began manufacturing the toys, and was soon bought out by entrepreneur Donald F. Duncan, who began a wildly popular marketing campaign for yo-yos.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Man with dark hair in a suit, smiling" class="auto-caption media-image img__fid__13161 img__view_mode__media_large attr__format__media_large" rel="lightbox" src="https://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Flores.jpg?itok=EphdVBh1" style="width: 384px; height: 550px;" title="A photo from a scrapbook that may be of Pedro Flores, the bellhop who helped popularize the yo-yo in America"></p><p>Our yo-yo collections span the decades. Here are a few of my favorites:</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_1191959"><img alt="Red white and blue metal yo-yo with flower design at the center" class="media-image" height="508" style="width: 550px; height: 508px;" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Kayo.jpg?itok=kxjSCCy5" /></a></p><p>This "Musical Ka-Yo" was made in the early 1930s by the Caro Manufacturing Company. "Musical" comes from the holes in the side that cause the steel yo-yo to whistle as it travels up and down. "Ka-Yo" comes from the Cayo Company avoiding the term "yo-yo," which had been trademarked by the Duncan toy company.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_1192001"><img alt="Roy Rodgers in cowboy gear next to horse" class="media-image" height="491" style="width: 550px; height: 491px;" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Rogers.jpg?itok=ra1NLQYI" /></a></p><p>Yo-yos and pop culture often go hand-in-hand. This Round Up King yo-yo from the 1950s features cowboy actor Roy Rogers and his horse Trigger. The yo-yo was made by Nebraska's All Western Plastics. The yo-yo's packaging (not pictured) reads: "It's smooth and fast, it's inside walls are slick as glass, no rough wood to catch the string, does all the tricks…it's Roundup King."</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_1191983"><img alt="Hamburger-shaped yo-yo with sesame seed bun" class="media-image" height="490" style="width: 550px; height: 490px;" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Burger.jpg?itok=eSCFZc8H" /></a></p><p>For those with memories of the Happy Meal toy and/or appreciation for anything food shaped: The McDonald's Hamburger Yo-Yo of the 1980s.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_1335527"><img alt="Wooden yo-yo with dark brown writing" class="media-image" height="413" style="width: 550px; height: 413px;" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Desert.jpg?itok=jNtx4T3z" /></a></p><p>Yo-yos aren't all fun and games. This yo-yo, manufactured by the Hummingbird Toy Company in about 1990-1991, commemorates Operation Desert Storm, Saudi Arabia. For every one bought in the U.S., one was sent to a serviceman overseas.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_1272970"><img alt="Blue yo-yo with black swirls" class="media-image" height="413" style="width: 550px; height: 413px;" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Wyatt.jpg?itok=GJPzm71S" /></a></p><p>Competitors and record-setters take their yo-yos seriously. Trick yo-yos are specially made to perform all the maneuvers you might have tried to master as a kid: "walk the dog," "rock the cradle," "loop the loop."&nbsp;This yo-yo was made by Mega SpinFaktor in 2001, to help yo-yo master Rick Wyatt set a world "sleep" record. "Sleep" is when a yo-yo spins at the end of the line. Wyatt successfully set a new record with this yo-yo in 2001, with 13 minutes and 5 seconds of sleep.</p><p>&nbsp;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/object/nmah_1191977"><img alt="Wooden yo-yo with rainbow stripes and a golden Smithsonian logo" class="media-image" height="512" style="width: 550px; height: 512px;" width="550" rel="lightbox" src="http://americanhistory.si.edu/sites/default/files/styles/blog_image/public/Smithsonian.jpg?itok=h0TpXL7C" /></a></p><p>Here's a yo-yo that we here at the museum get excited about! This colorful wooden specimen was made by What's Next Manufacturing Inc in 1995 as part of the BC yo-yo line. It bears a golden Smithsonian Institution sunburst logo.</p><p>Take a minute to explore our&nbsp;<a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/search/main?edan_q=set_name:%22Yo-Yos%22&amp;ogmt_view=grid">yo-yo collections</a>&nbsp;online. Which one is your favorite?</p><p><em>Julia Falkowski is an intern in the New Media Department of the National Museum of American History. She has also blogged about&nbsp;<a href="http://americanhistory.si.edu/blog/graham-bell-recordings">hearing historic voices</a>&nbsp;on fragile recordings.</em></p> </div></div></div><div class="field field-name-field-authors field-type-text field-label-above"><div class="field-label">Author(s):&nbsp;</div><div class="field-items"><div class="field-item even">Intern Julia Falkowski</div></div></div><div class="field field-name-field-blog-tags field-type-taxonomy-term-reference field-label-above clearfix"><h3 class="field-label">Categories: </h3><ul class="links"><li class="taxonomy-term-reference-0"><a href="/blog-tags/collections">From the Collections</a></li><li class="taxonomy-term-reference-1"><a href="/blog-tags/intern-perspectives">Intern Perspectives</a></li></ul></div><div id="disqus_thread"><noscript><p><a href="http://amhistorymuseum.disqus.com/?url=http%3A%2F%2Famericanhistory.si.edu%2Fblog%2Fthrowing-ourselves-yo-yo-heritage-month">View the discussion thread.</a></p></noscript></div><div class="feedflare"> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?a=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:qj6IDK7rITs"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?d=qj6IDK7rITs" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?a=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:7Q72WNTAKBA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?d=7Q72WNTAKBA" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?a=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:V_sGLiPBpWU"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?i=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:V_sGLiPBpWU" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?a=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:gIN9vFwOqvQ"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?i=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:gIN9vFwOqvQ" border="0"></img></a> <a href="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?a=Bbi6-mq87Ok:shxKqF0GfeA:yIl2AUoC8zA"><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~ff/OSayCanYouSee?d=yIl2AUoC8zA" border="0"></img></a> </div><img src="http://feeds.feedburner.com/~r/OSayCanYouSee/~4/Bbi6-mq87Ok" height="1" width="1" alt=""/>
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