Children of Japan

Children of Japan
Courtesy, R. John Wright

The Jumeau 201

The Jumeau 201
Courtesy Theriault's and Antique Doll Collector Magazine

Hinges and Hearts

Hinges and Hearts
An Exhibit of our Metal Dolls

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Tuxedo and Bangles

Tuxedo and Bangles

A History of Metal Dolls

A History of Metal Dolls
Now on Alibris.com and In Print! The First Book of its Kind

Alice, Commemorative Edition

Alice, Commemorative Edition
Courtesy, R. John Wright

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Emma, aka, La Contessa Bathory

Emma, aka, La Contessa Bathory
Her Grace wishes us all a Merry Christmas!

Annabelle

Annabelle

Emma Emmeline

Emma Emmeline
Our New Addition/fond of stuffed toys

Cloth Clown

Cloth Clown

Native American Art

Native American Art

the triplets

the triplets

c. 1969 Greek Plastic Mini Baby

c. 1969 Greek Plastic Mini Baby
Bought Athens on the street

Iron Maiden; Middle Ages

Iron Maiden; Middle Ages

Sand Baby Swirls!

Sand Baby Swirls!
By Glenda Rolle, courtesy, the Artist

Glenda's Logo

Glenda's Logo
Also, a link to her site

Sand Baby Castaway

Sand Baby Castaway
By Glenda Rolle, Courtesy the Artist

A French Friend

A French Friend

Mickey

Mickey
From our friends at The Fennimore Museum

2000+ year old Roman Rag Doll

2000+ year old Roman Rag Doll
British Museum, Child's Tomb

Ancient Egypt Paddle Doll

Ancient Egypt Paddle Doll
Among first "Toys?"

ushabti

ushabti
Egyptian Tomb Doll 18th Dynasty

Ann Parker Doll of Anne Boleyn

Ann Parker Doll of Anne Boleyn

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Tin Head Brother and Sister, a Recent Purchase

Tin Head Brother and Sister, a Recent Purchase
Courtesy, Antique Daughter

Judge Peep

Judge Peep

Hakata Doll Artist at Work

Hakata Doll Artist at Work
From the Museum Collection

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Japanese Costume Barbies

Japanese Costume Barbies
Samurai Ken

Etienne

Etienne
A Little Girl

Happy Heart Day

Happy Heart Day

From "Dolls"

From "Dolls"
A Favorite Doll Book

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Jenny Wren

Jenny Wren
Ultimate Doll Restorer

Our Friends at The Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum

Our Friends at The Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum

Baby Boo 1960s

Baby Boo 1960s
Reclaimed and Restored as a childhood Sabrina the Witch with Meow Meow

Dr. E's on Display with sign

Dr. E's on Display with sign

Dolls Restored ad New to the Museum

Dolls Restored ad New to the Museum
L to R: K*R /celluloid head, all bisque Artist Googly, 14 in. vinyl inuit sixties, early celluloid Skookum type.

Two More Rescued Dolls

Two More Rescued Dolls
Late Sixties Vinyl: L to R: Probably Horseman, all vinyl, jointed. New wig. R: Effanbee, probably Muffy, mid sixties. New wig and new clothing on both. About 12 inches high.

Restored Italian Baby Doll

Restored Italian Baby Doll
One of Dr. E's Rescued Residents

Dolls on Display

Dolls on Display
L to R: Nutcrackers, Danish Troll, HItty and her book, Patent Washable, Mechanical Minstrel, Creche figure, M. Alexander Swiss. Center is a German mechanical bear on the piano. Background is a bisque German costume doll.

A Few Friends

A Few Friends
These dolls are Old German and Nutcrackers from Dr. E's Museum. They are on loan to another local museum for the holidays.

Vintage Collage

Vintage Collage
Public Domain Art

The Merry Wanderer

The Merry Wanderer
Courtesy R. John Wright, The Hummel Collection

The Fennimore Doll Museum

The Fennimore Doll Museum

Robert

Robert
A Haunted Doll with a Story

Halloween Dolls Displayed in a Local Library

Halloween Dolls Displayed in a Local Library

The Cody Jumeau

The Cody Jumeau
Long-faced or Jumeau Triste

German Princesses

German Princesses
GAHC 2005

A Little PowerRanger

A Little PowerRanger
Halloween 2004

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The Island of the Dolls
Shrine to Dolls in Mexico

Based on the Nutshell Series of Death

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Doll House murder

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A lovely dress

A lovely dress

Raggedy Ann

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A few friends in cloth!

Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum, WI

Fennimore Doll and Toy Museum, WI
Pixar Animator's Collection

Little PM sisters

Little PM sisters
Recent eBay finds

Dressed Mexican Fleas

Dressed Mexican Fleas

Really old Dolls!

Really old Dolls!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Almost May and "Criminal Dolls"

It is cool, but nearly May. I started the blog on living green and will discuss planting, and spring, and recycling there, but really, the very nature of collecting in this contradictory society is recycling and preserving. The Green movement, or as we used to call it, The Ecology movement, is all about history and recycling, just as the earth depends on the Circle of Life. [Yes, I can link even this and The Lion King with dolls and toys, from the licensed products to July Taymor's puppets for the Broadway production!] If you think of it, many dolls come from natural substances, wooden dolls are still part of the living tree, folk dolls are made from nuts, plants, seeds, animal byproducts, rubber and plastic dolls are made from materials like resin and plants, coal is used in vinyl, cloth dolls often involve the use of plants, berries, and natural fibers, etc. Metal dolls and doll using precious or semiprecious stones come from the earth, etc.

Tomorrow, I am teaching one of my favorite classes on crime and capital punishment. I focus on capital punishment in popular culture, and of course, I found a way to incorporate toys and dolls, if only to strengthen my thesis that dolls are among the oldest cultural artifacts, and the need to play and create dolls permeats every aspect of society, both good and bad. I've asked before if anyone knew where I could find a photo, or a doll, of "Hanging Mary," the nineteenth century mechanical doll that may represent Mary Ann Cotton on the gallows, but there are other toys of this nature as well. Tomorrow, I will show my class Halloween dolls and toys of little skeletons on the gallows, sitting in an electric chair, on the Guillotine, etc. These talk and are mechanical; they are really modern automatons. They are funny, and say things like "Please sir, can I have another!" when activated. From Headless Historicals, there is a Catherine Howard doll holding her little head, and Marie Antoinette from Achie McFee who pops off her head. I have photos of "Death Row Joe" puppers, other dols representing Joan of Arc, Anne Boleyn, Mary Queen of Scots, Marie Antoinette, etc. Archie McFee also provides candy heads of Marie Antoinette on Lollipops, and soap head of Marie and Louis XVI. These are not unusual. Two Hundred years ago, Goethe, the great romantic poet, asked his mother to buy him a toy guillotine in France, during the heart of The Terror. She chastised him severely! I have a toy working guillotine, two, actually, and numerous skeletons and Halloween dolls of Vampires, skeletons, witches, and other figures associated with capital punishment in past times. There are also entire collections out there of Lizzie Borden and Freddy Kreuger dolls, Leather face, Frankenstein, and other murderous personages. Dracula himself would fill several buildings in doll, toy, and figure form. Here is a link for Headless Historicals; their links to historical information is top notch; http://www.spirithalloween.com/. Here is another link for Archie McFee:
http://www.mcphee.com/shop/

There are also Death Row bubble gum cigarettes, nursery rhymes associated with all types of criminals and capital punishments, folk songs, children's literature, and cartoons which deal with Captial Punishment and crime.

Children love these stories, and the Fairy Tales from The Brothers Grimm [who are Grimm!] and others. Video games and electronic diversions of all kinds address serial murder, violence, and crime. Many of us set up the hue and cry for the sake of our kids, and other parents, Stephen King, included, have argued that these games and films allow some type of catharis, an acceptable way to deal with agressions that should not be pent up.

I don't have an opinion other than as a concerned parent who monitors what her child watches, notices who his playmates are, etc. As a doll/toy/childhood culture/ childrens literature historian, I have an interest in studying all the games and gadgets, and the electronic diversions are close relatives of the automatons, mechanical dolls, and metal dolls I love to study.

There; I've brought it all full circle.

My spooky/criminal toys originally were meant to serve as a lesson to children to deter them from lives of crime and socially unacceptable behavior. In fact, public executions were meant to teach a moral lesson to the public in general and served a social control function. Now, they are a bit of a joke, neat Halloween decorations, and ways for us to laugh at our fears.

Thanks also as I write, to Spirit of Halloween, who let me photograph their life-sized axe man executioner. I would have loved to buy him, had I enough money and storage space! Here is their link for those interested; they have great things for little kids as well:http://www.spirithalloween.com/

Lastly, a great Scholastic kids book along these lines [besides all the Harry Potter books, etc.,} and the earlier "Goosebumps" series, is Encyclopedia Horrifica by Jonathan Gee, which also includes a "kid sized" article about the miniatures of Frances Glessner Lee.

Forgive my typos; if anyone would like to hear more about spooky dolls, capital punishment toys and dolls, etc., please let me know.

Adieu till next time!

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