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Paper Doll and Clothes 'Sue'
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Title: Paper Doll and Clothes 'Sue'
Identifier: X964.18.5 a-e
Donor: Unknown
Item Date: 1920-1925
Location: Bradley Museum

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Description: A paper doll with several clothes. There is a 'Sue' doll (a); a pink tennis dress (b); a blue bathing suit with cap (c ); yellow shoes and socks (d) and a dollís hat (e). They are cut from magazines.

Paper dolls often reflect the history and culture of the given society from which they are produced. Although paper dolls existed in differing forms for hundreds of years across various cultures, the first manufactured doll was "Little Fanny" made in London in 1810. These manufactured dolls were rare and often expensive and therefore highly valued, especially for American children who received imported dolls after the 1820s. 'Celebrity' dolls, like those imitating European royalty and later movie stars, were also popular at the time. After 1859, paper dolls were also printed in magazines, which grew increasingly popular after 1900. The 'Golden Age' of paper dolls was from 1930 - 1950, as their relatively inexpensive cost meant that they were affordable, even to those families affected by economic hardship. Rose O'Neill coined the word "Kewpish," meaning "cute," and created her dear little cherubs called Kewpies, first as story pages and then as paper dolls. Introduced in Woman's Home Companion in 1912, they enjoyed huge popularity, remaining perhaps the most widely recognized of the antique paper dolls today. For more information, see:
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