Tonka was founded as Mound Metalcraft, a gardening tools company, in the fall of 1946 in Mound, Minnesota. Their building's former occupant, the Streater Company, had made and patented several toys. E. C. Streater was not interested in the toy business so they approached Mound Metalcraft to make the toys.
The company's name comes from the Dakota Sioux word tanka, which means "great" or "big". Their first logo showed Tonka Toys name in red above waves, honoring nearby Lake Minnetonka.
The Mound Metalcraft name was removed.
The familiar wordmark of the T and K in the name connected by a line first appeared with this logo.
The Mound, Minn. wordmark was replaced with U.S.A.
The lake became yellow.
The lake was removed.
The typeface used is Clarendon Bold.
Modernized version of the classic logo.