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Heidi Hollister
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« on: May 23, 2012, 03:01:42 PM »

What did a new doll come in when it was purchased during the mid 19th century?  Did they come in boxes or something else, or nothing at all?

I ask because I am preparing a high fashion china doll trousseau for my daughter when she is old enough to take care of one.  Since I have years and years to do this, I am starting to go hog wild with all the things I want to make for this doll.  Fashionable clothes, a trunk to put them in, a high post double size rope bed with all accurate bedding and drapery, you name it, I want to make it for her.  Most importantly, when I present her with this doll, I want her to be presented in perfect period form. 

So!  I've been hunting up doll boxes online to no avail.  I've found paper doll boxes, but all the China dolls seem to be on their own.  Just wondering if this is because the weren't IN boxes or because the box was thrown away long ago.
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MrsPeebles
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« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2012, 04:07:02 PM »

I have a friend who has a collection of china head dolls that have been passed down through her family. Some of them have miniature wooden trunks, much like our own adult size, and inside are fabulous ensembles with a tray above for bonnets, shoes, and accessories. Some of the trunks are camel back while others have a flat top. I should mention, that the dolls also fit inside of these trunks.

Perhaps you could buy a tiny wooden trunk box from a craft store and stain the exterior and paper the inside to hold the doll and wardrobe. BTW, I'm in the same process myself, thinking ahead for grandchildren. Wink
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Micaila
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« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2012, 04:13:39 PM »

Okay, help me out here Heidi, what about the diary entry from the little girl whose friend has the wax headed doll. The little girl bites into the doll's head, is horrified by her actions and tucks the doll back into her box(?).
Do you know the diary I'm talking about? Does she give any discription of the box?
That might be one place to look.
HTH,
Micaila
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Donna Rowan
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« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2012, 06:00:33 PM »

My china doll Amy came in her original box. She came to me, as she came to the store, back around the turn of the century? She's a low brow china so shes any where betwen 1870/80ish and the teens. They were made for years.so exact date is impossible. She came un assembled as a "kit" head, arms, legs. Her box was plain gray paste board with a sepert lid it was only big enough to hold her head arms and legs arms legs and head wrapped seperetly in old [might add musty Tongue] tissue papper.Arms and legs were tucked into her shoulder section. The tissue was left at the first place we stopped after we left the store. It was stinking up the car. Wink  I dint remember any tags on the box there was a faint penciled price but not really readable. She cost Daddy $5.00. The lady had planed to make her up her self and had ordered a body pattern and dress pattern but "never got around to it" she gave me those too. As she said she might have 50 more in boxes back there some place. They bought the store and contents and they hadn't scratched the surfice of what they had, in the back room .Let alone the out buildings and barn. I know she came home in her box what happened to it after that I dint know, Mommy probably tossed it. I know Jeamues came in boxes marked with maker name. But they were high end. You might want to play around on this sight. They deal in high end dolls. Some in original boxes. If you like dolls have a cup ready for your drool. http://www.theriaults.com/default/index.cfm if there sight in hard to maneuver [sometimes realy hard Angry] try  getting them through a co. called proxi bid. then theriaults doll auctions both sites show same pics "usualy". Hope some of it helps. Cheesy
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Paula
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« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2012, 06:41:07 AM »

Heidi, I'm headed down to work tomorrow and will check out the story Micaila's talking about and let you know.
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2012, 12:15:57 PM »

Paula, I'm going into work tomorrow too!  Smiley  I'll see you there.  The story is not a diary but rather a remembrance of .... gack!  I can't remember her name right now!  The little girl who was 4 years old when she crossed the trail....   Mary Ann I want to call her.... can't remember her last name.  HUTCHENSON! I think that was it.

The story came to me that it was a china doll whose head was bitten off though a wax doll might make more sense.  But the story just mentioned a box, not if it CAME in that box or if she just had a box for it to protect it....  Either way it does indicate SOME kind of box for dolls, just nothing else.

I've been thinking of making her own traveling trunk to put everything in.  It seems like the most logical solution right now, but if there is evidence out there for a box, decorated or otherwise, I want to try doing that.    The trunk will still be there though.  Smiley  I have some terrific ideas for it.
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BethT
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« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2012, 11:42:15 AM »

Heidi you just gave me the most glorious picture in my head of my favorite book when I was little - a little princess!!! NOT the movie (gag) but the book description of lace on petticoats and trunks all round the room!!!!!  Let me see if I can find it - I think about thirty years later, if not more, so I don't know if it helps.... Just looked it up, and the original book was written in 1888...so again....not sure....

"Sara laughed, but she turned to the biggest box.  When she took out the Last Doll it was so magnificent that the children uttered delighted groans of joy and actually drew back to gaze at it in breathless rapture."

So it actually was in a box, to receive it.

"Here is her trunk," said Sara.  "Let us open it and look at her things."
   She sat down upon the floor and turned the key.  The children crowded clamoring around her, as she lifted tray after tray and revealed their contents.  Never had the schoolroom been in such an uproar.  There were lace collars and silks stocking and handkerchiefs; there was a jewel case containing a necklace and a tiara which looked quite as if they were made of real diamonds; there was a long sealskin and muff; there were ball dresses and walking dresses and visiting dresses; there were hats and tea gowns and fans."

So yeah.  This is how I felt when I went to my cousin's birthday party and found that her aunt (about three or four years older than me) had three American girl dolls and TONS of clothes for them.  I must have tried every outfit in the trunk on them, because Carly was kind enough to say 'have at it girlfriend'. Cheesy

-Beth
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Gen. 3:21
The LORD God made garments of skin for Adam and his wife and clothed them.
 
Thus began fashion.
Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2012, 11:07:02 AM »

HA!  Completely by accident I found this doll with it's original presentation box!!  (I was actually researching wooden boxes that stuff came in rather than anything doll related.)  Let it be known that this one looks like light blue cereal box cardboard with a fashion plate type image in the front.  The inside has brown paper folded neatly to fill the space... almost like paper bag paper, but maybe more like lunch sack paper thickness.  Or in between the two.

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Ms. Jean
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« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2012, 11:46:04 AM »


Heidi, is that doll at your museum at the end of the Oregon Trail?  Did she arrive at a store, or with a family?  Are dates known?

Thanks!

Jean
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2012, 12:17:37 PM »

No, the doll in this picture was one I found online at Ruby Lane Antiques.  Mine is a reproduction made probably within the last 20 years that I chanced upon at an antique store in Oklahoma.  My doll IS on display right now at the Oregon Trail, but she's not old.  I have doll envy just looking at the picture of the Mary Todd Lincoln doll.
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Paula
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« Reply #10 on: May 29, 2012, 12:47:56 PM »

And Heidi's doll, who is on display, should be a little less worried about a box to live in and a lot more worried about some clothing.....  (ducks and runsSmiley
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2012, 12:52:22 PM »

Hey!  She's got clothing!  Nancy Keller-Sholz was very kind and made her a chemise and drawers.  It's not my fault she refuses to wear them until the exhibit is over!  Wink
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Heidi Hollister
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« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2012, 12:53:07 PM »

Besides... wouldn't you want a box to hide in if you had no clothes to wear?
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