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Mama Doll

doll

American doll makers introduced Mama dolls as an innovation in doll play in the early years of the 20th century. These dolls were generally made with composition heads and limbs on cloth bodies fitted with a sound mechanism that uttered a noise meant to be "Mama" when tipped, rocked, or shook. The construction of the legs allowed the dolls to simulate walking when held just so by their little keepers. Manufacturers presented the dolls as unbreakable compared to the fragile German bisque dolls, and the novelty of the dolls' "walking" and "talking" created a marketing craze of sorts in the first years of the 1920s. The dolls also helped establish the American doll industry by breaking Americans of their desire for imported dolls. Perhaps most significantly, Mama dolls ushered in a new kind of nurturing doll play that encouraged girls to treat their dolls as babies and toddlers to be cared for.

Materialcomposition | fabric | tin
OriginUSA
StyleMama
Object ID109.16608
Credit LineGift of Mark & Sandy Kleisley and Dorothy Kleisley

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