Ohio Life

All Dolled Up

Ohio museums display historic and popular dolls, from antique bisque figures to Kewpie, Barbie and American Girls.

Some faces are sweet, some are sour. Others are hauntingly beautiful or incredibly lifelike. Glass eyes open and close while button or painted eyes stare straight ahead from wooden, bisque or plastic heads. Arms move in gentle rotations or flop alongside cloth bodies.

Many dolls are rocked to sleep by little girls. But it’s not just children who like dolls. Dolls have been part of every culture in the world and speak silent volumes about the ways we view our bodies, families, history and fashion. Doll collecting is the second biggest collectible hobby in the United States. Many adults (it counts even if you just kept Barbie from your childhood) are passionate collectors.

Ohio has several significant doll collections that can be viewed by the public. An exhibit might even have the doll you wished you would have never given away.  To read more, click here to subscribe >>