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September has always been an important month in the Toy Soldier Collectors calendar. There were some concerns about this year, due to the trials and tribulations of the Chicago Toy Soldier Show which has always been the first date to be put into in my personal diary. However, I am delighted to report despite these problems, its successor, the Chicagoland show, stepped into the breach. Other show reports from England and Italy, also show that the hobby is alive and well. It would be great to get reports of other US shows. Please do keep us all, up to date with your events and other messages and finds.

As the Fall approaches, and our thoughts turn to roasting chestnuts in front of an open fire, spare a thought for those intrepid explorers who just over 100 years ago planted their flags on the North and South Poles, often at great risk to life and limb. Steve Sommers article, on how these events were portrayed by toy soldier manufacturers (especially from Germany), leads off another bumper issue.

Steve contrasts such expeditions into the unknown with the more recent race into space, and the moon landings. Luigi Toiati’s piece takes up the space theme, although this genre of toys is as much about fantasy as science fact.

Regular contributor Stan Alekna chips in with another Dimestore mystery, while Will Beierwaltes helps to fill a gap about another important US maker – Feix. This article highlights the significance of that company’s connections with Germany.

Gisbert Freber’s piece also continues that theme, with a fascinating tale of discovery of some very old slate moulds, originally from Germany but transported to the USA over 100 years ago. He will continue this story in our next issue.

Bill Anderson rounds things off for this issue with another article focusing on Britains’ representation of famous regiments, this time featuring the West India Regiment.

PS – While making final checks on this issue before going to press I could not help but notice the similarity of the figure highlighted in Will Beierwaltes article (Figure 14) with Stan Alekna’s Mystery figure. Not identical, but maybe there is some connection here?

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