This doll recalls a certain period in the middle of the 20th century when most towns, large and small, had a five-and-dime store that offered a wide variety of consumer goods. Best of all for children, the variety stores sold toys and dolls for not much more than a few weeks' allowance.The dolls for sale at Woolworth's, Ben Franklin, Murphy's, J. J. Newberry, and other dimestores were generic brands with nondescript fashions. The dolls sold in cardboard boxes, called display dolls, usually stood about eight inches tall, wore wigs of mohair or synthetic hair, and presented exotic dresses of lace, ruffles, and ribbons from faraway lands and times past. While many young girls longed for the Madame Alexander dolls and the Betsy McCall dolls of the distant department stores and mail-order catalogues, the dimestore dolls were close as the downtown store, readily available, and reasonably affordable.


  • Title: Doll:Melody Doll Irish Girl
  • Creator: The House of Dolls
  • Date Created: ca. 1950
  • Location: Chicago, IL
  • Subject Keywords: ethnicity, Irish
  • Type: Collector Dolls, Dolls from the Fifties and Sixties
  • Medium: hard plastic, fabric, cardboard, cellophane
  • Object ID: 112.1017
  • Credit Line: Gift of the Luginbill Family in Memory of Bob and Mary Luginbill

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