In the early days……

Minifigs haven’t always looked the way we are used to them today. They have followed an evolutional process which started back in 1974 with the introduction of the LEGO family.

They looked a little different to todays figures. The head was much larger and had studs for ears. they had no body or legs, these you built yourself. But they did have arms. Posable arms, jointed at the elbow, and a hand that is almost looks similar to the modern day version. Rather than being ‘C’ shaped they were a complete circle with a hollowed nobble part.

I still have a body part, head, hair and a hat for this original LEGO figure, known as Maxifigs these days., sadly they do not have hands. But I know that a grandmother that came in the LEGO family set is lurking at the in laws house.


Original figures from 1974 LEGO family set



In 1975, LEGO made a precursor to the minifig. These newer version people were the same size/scale as a standard minifig is today, but they had solid torsos and leg pieces. In fact they didn’t even have faces!

They had hair and hats, but were still pretty basic. They had no hands or arms. And in our house they generally graced the stations and drove the trains on the good old ‘blue’ LEGO railway track we had.


The 1975 version Minifig



The first modern Minifig was released in 1978, introducing new characters for the Castle, Space and Town sets. They were produced with a simple printed face, just 2 eyes and a smile. And this was they way they pretty much stayed for the next decade. When LEGO introduced the LEGO Pirates in 1989, they introduced different facial expressions and things like eye patches, hooks for hands and the odd peg leg. However the minifig still remained with the classic yellow head that we all associate with minifigs, and they stayed this way until 2003, when skin tones were brought in for various sets.

Although the 1975 version by todays standard are pretty naff in terms of what you can do with them, for me they still remind me of childhood days, but I do enjoy the endless possibilites that  can be made with the modern version. I wonder if LEGO would ever make the current minifig with an articulated arm joint like the original ones of 1974. Would be fairly tricky I guess as the arms are a lot smaller, but just think what cool positions you could get the minifigs to do


11 comments on “In the early days……

  1. christos says:

    i have several lego figs as the ones you have at the top photo( Original figures from 1974 LEGO family set), they are all in an electronic ferris wheel. i have it in my warehouse. i think its still working. i also have a big train station house ( but i dont have the train anymore) with the same figs.
    do they worth anything???
    i can even send pics
    thank you for your time

    • legogirl says:

      I have no idea of cost tbh. Ebay might give you an idea if anyone is selling them.
      Electronic Ferris wheel sounds good, in Lego I take it?

  2. christos says:

    i ve tried there( ebay) but noone has similar, so i can t really say:/
    thank you for your time though:))))

  3. christos says:

    thanks a lot:))
    i really appreciate this:)

  4. christos says:

    I was lucky in a way finally, after contacting Lego they said to me that its a custom made. they couldnt trace all of the pieces but they said to me that t has sets like the following:
    Set 114 the Universal Building Set from 1977
    Set 200 the LEGO Family from 1974
    Set 210 Cowboys from 1976
    the rest even lego couldnt trace them. I wish i could sent you pix so you can have a look. now i have an old city with electrical train around it. i guess that will be a hard one.
    thank you so much for trying to help me though. i really appreciate it:))

  5. christos says:

    i ll try to make a video for you so you can have a look;)

  6. christos says:

    have a look at it. thats the one. what do you think??

  7. legogirl says:

    That is great. Thanks for sharing. I can see that it is the original blue railway track, so assuming it will be a 4.5volt train with the battery for the motor in the tender of the engine?….. this page has details of all train sets across all the generations of Lego railway.

  8. christos says:

    yes that is true:) you seem to know a lot. thank you for the info. i really appreciate it.

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