Historical information

This item is from a collection donated by descendants of John Francis Turner of Wodonga. Mr. Turner was born on 6 June 1885. He completed all of his schooling at Scotts Boarding School in Albury, New South Wales. On leaving school, he was employed at Dalgety’s, Albury as an auctioneer. In 1924 John was promoted to Manager of the Wodonga Branch of Dalgety’s.
On 15/03/1900 he married Beatrice Neal (born 7/12/1887 and died 7/2/1953) from Collingwood, Victoria. They had 4 daughters – Francis (Nancy), Heather, Jessie and Mary.
In 1920, the family moved From Albury to Wodonga, purchasing their family home “Locherbie” at 169 High Street, Wodonga. "Locherbie" still stands in Wodonga in 2022. The collection contains items used by the Turner family during their life in Wodonga.

The Ernest Lehmann Co was founded in 1881 by Ernest Paul Lehmann in Brandenburg, Germany. Lehmann exported vast quantities of toys to the United States from 1895 to 1929 (excluding years of WWI). In 1921, Mr. Lehmann’s cousin, Johannes Richter joined the firm and built on the Lehmann reputation by patenting toys. Lehmann specialized in lithographed tinplate, mechanical transportation toys, and figures known for colorful patina. This toy was manufactured between 1924 and 1935. The Lehmann catalogue describes the toy as “[a] Mexican zebra team. The zebra refuses to be tamed and leaps about wildly.” It is believed to have been inspired by an unsuccessful German stud farm in Dar es Salaam that attempted to cross-breed zebra with domesticated horse.


This item comes from a collection used by a prominent citizen of Wodonga. It is representative of popular children's toys in the 1920s and 1930s.

Physical description

This is a tin, lithographed, windup toy featuring a zebra and Mexican style driver. The seated driver has a green top and cream trousers and yellow and green pointed hat, zebra with red ears and cord tail. The cart is red and cream, embossed with the Lehmann company emblem and other patent information. The number 1881 on the back of the cart represents the year Ernest Lehmann Co was founded.

Inscriptions & markings

On back of cart" ZIKRA/ 1881/LEHMANN"
Behind driver: "PAT USA APP FOR" and PATENT USA 22 JAN 07/ 2 DEC 13"