1924 Cincinnati Doll Co. Catalog – Composition Carnival Kewpies & Plaster Lamp Dolls
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1924 Cincinnati Doll Co. Catalog – Composition Carnival Kewpies & Plaster Lamp Dolls

October 18, 2019


Hi and welcome to Vintage Doll Collector. Today I want to share with you a rare piece
of ephemera – the 1924 wholesale catalog from the Cincinnati Doll Company. The company was located at 311 to 313 East
Twelfth St. in Cincinnati, Ohio. The catalog measures 9″ x 6″ and has 16 pages
including the front and back covers. Of this, there are seven pages featuring dolls,
and 6 pages of other items. The Queen doll is all composition, 26″ tall
and was available dressed in silk with marabou trim. A less expensive version, called Princess,
is the same doll, but dressed in cheaper sateen fabric. As you can see, the prices are per dozen,
which is how you can tell it’s a wholesale catalog. Queen is what’s known as a Carnival Kewpie. These dolls are generally jointed only at
the shoulders, and they always have large painted side glancing googly eyes. Carnival Kewpies aren’t real licensed Kewpie
dolls, and they weren’t available solely as carnival prizes, so the name isn’t an accurate
one, but it’s how many collectors commonly refer to this type of doll. Carnival dolls are often dressed in simple
costumes with fancy trims, like these two. These are smaller than the Queen and Princess
dolls on the previous page. This doll is 19″ tall. As Beauty, she’s dress in silk, and as Stella,
in sateen. Both have marabou trim. The catalog descriptions don’t mention the
doll’s hair, but Carnival Kewpies usually have mohair fiber glued directly to the head. This 16″ doll, called Vamp, wears a costume
described as a Flapper Plume dress. It appears to be made of ostrich feathers. The 14″ version is called Baby. Here’s a couple of styles of mama dolls. No mention is made of the material, but mama
dolls usually have composition heads and limbs, on a cloth body. These appear to have painted eyes. The boy doll on the left was sold in three
different sizes: 17″ Buster, 20″ George, and 27″ Willie. He has molded hair and wears a checked romper
with matching bonnet. The girl doll on the right was sold as 20″
Mary and 23″ Jane. She wears a lace trimmed dress with matching
bloomers and bonnet, and appears to have a wig. The next page shows a couple of Carnival Kewpie
type lamp dolls. These dolls have molded bases for stability. I’ve seen a few of these in person, and the
lamp socket is molded right into the head. Unfortunately that makes it tricky to rewire. The first one, who’s just called Light, is
26″ tall with a 15″ oblong shade, trimmed with silk fringe. She’s described as unbreakable, which means
she’s made of composition. The smaller one, called Bell, is 21″ tall and has a pleated shade and tinsel trimmed skirt. She’s made of plaster rather than composition. They’re priced by the piece rather than by
the dozen. The next page shows more plaster dolls. I think these are the same doll as Bell, but
without the lamp wiring. Without the socket and shade, they’re 14″
tall. Grace has long marcelled hair, and a tinsel
trimmed skirt. You could get the same doll without the skirt
for 5 cents less, called Hope. Diamond is the same doll as Grace, but her
hair is shorter and straight. Without the skirt, she was called Ruby. Still more plaster dolls, these are dressed
in the ostrich plume outfits and were available in two different sizes. Rose has the marcelled hair. The straight haired version was called Viola. Agnes is just 9″ tall. She appears to have her arms molded to her
sides, not jointed like the other dolls. She also has her name on the base. The next page shows a doll and a couple of
dog figures. It doesn’t say whether they’re plaster or
composition. The doll on the left, named Squat, is molded
in a kneeling position. From the photo, it looks like she has a wig,
but hard to tell. She’s 7″ tall. The dog on the right is called Wow, and is
11″ tall. It looks like she might have a bow on her
head. Towser is 8 1/2″ tall and has a funny expression. The description says “Fine Flash for Intermediate.” I’m guessing that means it’s decent quality
for a medium priced item. But leave me a comment if you have any insight
on that. The rest of the catalog is household items. These blankets are quite nice. These pillow covers are pretty too. It says there were 25 different designs available. There are nesting baskets and a manicure set. Kitchen stuff too – an aluminum roasting pan
and eight quart kettle. Silver plated items were apparently popular
carnival prizes too. These items are a lot more expensive than
the dolls. The cup at lower right is priced at $3 each. The next page is a price list of paddles with tickets for different size wheels, and something called Laydowns – apparently something used
in the carnival business. The back cover gives the final sales pitch:
“We want your business.” This catalog still has its original mailing
envelope. I want to end by showing you this wonderful
card I got at an auction, that holds a real photo of a little girl holding a Carnival
Kewpie doll. Under the flap that says “Days of the Year,”
there’s a tiny 1921 calendar. Here’s a closer look. The doll is very similar to the Beauty doll
shown in the Cincinnati Doll Company catalog. Thanks for joining me today! I hope you enjoyed this trip back in time
to the 1920s. If you’d like to be notified when I have new
videos available, click on the Subscribe button and the little bell icon. See you next time!

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  1. Good morning, how nice to see these dolls in their original state as far as condition and outfits. You don't really find them like this anymore. Such a treasure and glad that you will be keeping it safe. I hope Santa brings you lots and you have a very Merry Christmas and a very happy and healthy New year. Please keep up the good work as you are the best. If you ever make it down to South Florida it would be nice to meet you at a local doll show. Be safe and big hugs..๐ŸŽ„

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