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For decades, black mothers and grandmothers created handmade cloth dolls fashioned of scraps of dark fabric for their youngsters, but such dolls were not widely available. Dolls made in the United States in the early years of the 20th century rarely had dark complexions representing African Americans. In the 1930s, some dolls representing African Americans made of composition appeared on the American market. Not until the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s encouraged African Americans to express their own black pride, however, did doll manufacturers offer quantities of dolls that young black girls could identify with. This unusual doll of composition dating from the 1930s to the 1950s offers a rare example of an early dark-complected play doll.

  • Material: composition | paint | fabric
  • Object ID: 113.155
  • Credit Line: Gift of Roxie Wood Mitchell
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