A lot of model railroad catalogs have shown people using their products. Especially the children, even though it was the adults who were actually buying those trains in most cases. And, for better or worse, it was boy children who did most of the playing with the trains. The Lionel catalogs of the 1950’s in particular, often showed sisters admiring the trains, but never touching them. And, Mom and dad were in the background, beaming with approval. Go figure. And, in the fullness of time, a lot of those little girls who never got to play with the trains have since moved on to buy and enjoy their own trains. No Boys Allowed.
In any case, people started getting a lot more inclusion with the German model train catalogs in the late 1960’s and 1970’s. Change was in the air and this included showing the fact that those nice model trains actually had a human connection. In particular, Trix, LGB and sometimes Arnold showed people in their catalogs, but it was Märklin that did it on a high level during that era. And they really went over the top in their Gauge 1 catalog. So, too, the Gauge 1 book “Märklin I für Haus + Garten” was wall-to-wall with real people using real model trains.
Here, some favorites from that era: