The hobby of collecting
antique coin-op machines has grown as more people recognize the exciting qualities these machines possess. As an art form, they cover the period from 1885 to about 1950.
Within this period, the diversity of style and function is extraordinary. The charm, beauty, and character found in these objects as works of art would in themselves be enough to make them treasures.
antique coin machines offer a great deal more. They are born entertainers, made to delight the spirit of anyone whose attention they attract. They accept our coins and many perform as willingly today as when they first appeared.
Many of these machines were used in Penny Arcade's. A
Penny Arcade can be any type of venue for coin-operated devices, usually for entertainment. This included early forms of Pinball Machines and fortune telling machinery of the 1930s. Vending machines may also be considered in this category. The earliest penny arcades from the nineteenth century had machines called bagatelles—a game combining pinball and billiards. Later, penny arcade machines evolved more similar to modern pinball.
Another form of machine found in penny arcades were "peep show" machines which allowed the viewer to see various views of objects and later moving pictures. Slot machines, love testers, fortune teller machines and other
coin operated devices were found in such venues.