Monday, June 16, 2008

The Mysterious Case of the Dolly's Head

A very odd thing happened to me today.

I've been looking at issues of Selvedge for quite some time and yesterday finally forked over the huge cost of a single issue, for the sake of some pretty articles (especially those on small / doll houses which is an obsession of mine). But the cost was more than made up to me when I was reading an article on dolls and ran across this:

It give me the heeby jeebies on it's own but, when compared with this family heirloom (from my husband's grandmother), it takes on a whole new dimension of bizarre-ness. She (his grandmother) claims that her porcelain doll head came from a shipwreck that her brother (a diver) found sometime when she was a girl, living in South Texas, so it must have been found in the 30's. Her mother made it into a doll by fashioning a body and a dress for it.

Where did all of these bisque heads come from? Did they ever have any non-scary features (eyeballs and such)? Why are they all turning up as just heads? How have they all managed to age in such a similar way? Why do they all have such pinchably fat cheeks and cute, Shirley Temple curls? So many questions, so many childhood memories of books about terrifying dolls coming to mind . . .

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