Most ordinary citizens could not afford Marklin products during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The product line was primarily aimed at the wealthy American market or the nobility of Europe.
The first "Consumer" catalog was not introduced until the mid 1920's and as a result sales expanded into a much larger market. The aim of the catalogs around this time (and to present day) was to show the quality and prestige of the products, hence much time and effort was put into the shape and layout of them.
Early catalogs, around 1928, mostly showed children or complete families playing with Marklin products. This gave a sense that the product united the family.
Specialised train motif artists gave shape to the cover pages during the 1930's and in 1935 the first full colour catalog was released. 1935 also was the year that Marklin introduced OO scale.
The outbreak of World War II had a devastating effect on Marklin production, as most manufacturing plants in Germany were placed into War production mode.
The first post-war catalog was not issued until 1947. It was a modest start, compared to those of the pre-war years. Because of paper supply problems it was not generally released to consumers but only distributed to dealers. There was also a supply problem of materials that made Marklin models.
During the 1950's, the cover pages were dominated by prototype pictures and in 1959, Marklin's 100th anniversary was celebrated. An expensive looking catalog (judged by the standards of the time) was release.
In the 1960's the emphasis was on the years new items. During the mid to late 70's and early 80's all three scales in the Marklin range (HO, Z, 1) where shown on the cover but around 1984 three individual catalogs where release, 1 for each scale). 1984 also was the 125th Anniversary of Marklin.
1985/86 celebrated 50 years of HO gauge.
Since 1991 a general "Complete Program" catalog has been produced"
Milestones in Marklin Model Railways
Original Copy of Catalog
PDF Version only
1999-10 Year and Month of Printing