Archive Record

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Object Name Collection, Archival
Object ID 2013.033
Collection Mary W. Cox Paper Doll Collection
Title Mary W. Cox Paper Doll Collection
Summary Collection of paper dolls, some homemade, but mostly store-bought. Includes:
4-Magazines with paper dolls between the pages[dolls removed to folders; see Archivist's Notes]
4-Boxed sets of paper dolls [dolls removed to folders; see Archivist's Notes]
1-Folder with I Love Lucy dolls

Donor's notes on individual paper doll sets:

In Family Circle magazine:

1.Betsy McCall and family-the blonde girl is Barbara, the little girl is Linda and the boy is Jimmy. I saved many of the monthly stories, too, but matching the clothes with the appropriate stories would probably be a task not worth trying.

2.Home-made standing doll (p. 40 in Fun With Paper Dolls)

3.Home-made paper doll family (pp. 8-29)

4.Home-made double-sided doll (p. 34)

5.Home-made "Trixie"-articulated doll (p. 30)

In McCall's, Feb. 1952

1.The "knights and ladies" set is probably the oldest; I remembering having these paper dolls before we moved to 208 Woodrow Avenue in Sept. 1948.

2.Diane was "Queen of the Paper Dolls"-I'm not sure why, but I just decided she was. That's probably why she has so many clothes, including a wedding dress that came from another set from which the bride doll got lost, and home-made costumes, including one that's supposed to be from the scene in Disney's Cinderella in which the wicked stepsisters destroy the dress that the mice have made for Cinderella and a blobby robe that was her costume as Mary in the Christmas show. I played with the set that includes Diane so much that the dolls and their clothes were getting worn and faded, so I bought a duplicate several years after I got the first one. I actually found this set reissued as "Dream Girls" (I assume that was the original name) a few years ago and bought it for a friend who also loved paper dolls as a child. I really didn't need a third Diane!

3.The home-made costume for this doll was a design for a Halloween costume that neither my mother nor I had the skill to make-it was to be a "fire demon." (The actual costume had to fit over my jeans and t-shirt and was rather less sleek, because I was rather less sleek than the paper doll.)

4.Roy Rogers and Dale Evans--note his Santa costume (home-made)-and Trigger

5.These little ones were called "Let's Play House"

6.One of many wedding sets


8.Ava Gardner


10.Esther Williams

11.Dagwood and Blondie

12.These have clothes with flocking.

13.These feature a selection of wigs, as well as clothes.

14.Gene Autry (I think) I don't know who the second cowboy is supposed to be.

In McCall's, December 1952

1.These are supposed to be beauty queens from various (mostly agricultural) festivals; the Corn Princess costume is something only an eight-year-old would find incredibly beautiful.

2.I think these must have been showgirls…

3.Little sister/big sister ballerinas

4.Double-sided, with hair. I loved the raincoat!

5.These have flocking on the backs of some of the clothes to make them stick to the flocking on the dolls.

6.This came in a book, which I apparently no longer have, that was a story about a doll named Adeline. The paper doll was Adeline. I think this probably dates back to 1947 (or maybe even 1946)-the poor color registration looks like post-war printing,

7.These are genuinely antique-I think they were tucked inside a Godey's Ladies Book that my grandmother had.

8.Piper Laurie

9.Eve Arden

In Holiday magazine

1.Double-sided doll with hair

2.June Allyson

3.Elizabeth Taylor

4.These are not double-sided, but have some wrap-around dresses.

5.Hedy Lamar

6.This is a bride-and-flower girls set I replaced, because the original bride and some of the clothes were lost. That's why there are two each of the flower girls and some of the clothes. (The bride's dress from the original set is the one I gave to "Diane.")

7.These are from a paper-back book about a dollhouse wedding. I didn't feel quite right about cutting up pages with the story on the back, but that's what was apparently intended. Some of the clothes were left plain for coloring, which I did.

8.A flocked doll with fabric clothes. I suspect I "colorized her.

9.This one came with clothes to design-or at least to color. I'm not sure if that transparent slip came with the set or if I made it from wax paper.

Boxed sets

In the box that says "Young Moderns" are "Toni" dolls, sponsored by Toni permanents. The dolls have a number of different hairstyles-including ones with shampoo and curlers! I think they wound up in this box because their skirts wrap around so they can stand up, making them too wide for magazine storage.

The bridal party and "The Gang" are notable for being heavy cardboard dolls that stood up in the plastic stands provided.

Lucy and Ricky are probably among the last paper dolls I bought to play with-maybe 1953-54.

The "Holiday Twins" came with their own crayons (I found them, and they're in the box) that were designed for coloring on that slick surface. Although they were obviously fair-skinned and blue-eyed and traveled only (as the box notes) in Western Europe, they still gave me a real excitement about the concept that people in different countries had different traditional costumes and different cultures. In fact, it was shortly after I got these paper dolls that I probably caused some consternation in my Sunday School class by saying I was thankful that God made all those different people, with different clothes and different languages and different food… My teacher looked at me in a way that made me feel that was NOT the right answer; it was the early '50s, and I guess she thought it would have been a lot easier if God had stopped with white, Southern Presbyterians.
Physical Description Users should be cautious when handling folders, as the small paper contents can easily shift and fall out.
The dolls with flocking are fragile and the flocking will continue to dry out and fall off. Be careful not to touch the areas with flocking.
Date 1944-1954
Creator Cox, Mary Womack
People Cox, Mary Womack
Peery, Cindy
Search Terms Sherrod Park
Emerywood Court Apartments
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Credit Line Gift of Mary W. Cox