Every saga has a beginning, and for Star Wars mini-figure collectors it was the fourth quarter of 1977, when a small toy company from Cincinnati, Ohio sold us the promise of toys.

No one could have expected Star Wars to be the hit that it was, and as such many potential licenses were caught with their pants down. Kenner knew they couldn’t have their first collection of figures out in time for Christmas, so they did the next best thing: They sold envelopes containing a cardboard display for the forthcoming figures and a mail in certificate that would insure the owner a set of the first four figures to be released. In the first quarter of 1978, Kenner fulfilled its pledge and shipped little mailer boxes containing a white tray twelve little white foot pegs to go on the cardboard display along with Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia Organa, Chewbacca, and Artoo-Detoo (R2-D2) mini-figures. And in doing so began a legacy that continues today.

The Original Collection mini-figure line - which also included a selection of ships and playsets scaled to the 3 3/4” figures, and twelve Large Size action figures - went on to be shipped world-wide from 1978 to 1985 and were packaged over those years under the titles Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and The Power of the Force.

In 1985, to support the comic books and animated television programs of the same names, Kenner released mini-figures and accessories under the titles Droids and Ewoks. These two lines, with the exception of the Boba Fett and A-wing Pilot figures, were all exclusive sculpts to represent the character’s animated design. Both the Ewoks and Droids lines, as well as The Power Of The Force range, featured character specific collectors coins packaged exclusively with each figure.

When all was said and done Kenner released 115 mini-figures, excluding production variations, but they did much more than sell the Star Wars Generation toys, they shaped our childhoods, and allowed us to live in a galaxy far, far away.

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