Thursday, May 28, 2009

American girls are, oh oh oh!

The New York Times had an article a few days ago about the newest "American Girl" doll that is about to be released. Rebecca Rubin will be "a 9-year-old girl living on the Lower East Side in 1914 with her Russian-Jewish immigrant parents, siblings and a grandmother known only as Bubbie."

Now, when I was a nine year old and received my beloved Molly McIntire, there were three dolls- Molly, from 1944; Samantha, from 1904 (who has since been retired!!! what!?) and Kirsten, from 1854. Since then, there have been many more added to the family. According to wikipedia, there are-

Historical Character dolls
3.1 Kaya, 1764
3.2 Felicity Merriman, 1774
3.2.1 Elizabeth Cole, 1774
3.3 Josefina Montoya, 1824
3.4 Kirsten Larson, 1854
3.5 Addy Walker, 1864
3.6 Samantha Parkington, 1904
3.6.1 Nellie O'Malley, 1904
3.7 Rebecca Rubin, 1914
3.8 Kit Kittredge, 1934
3.8.1 Ruthie Smithens, 1934
3.9 Molly McIntire, 1944
3.9.1 Emily Bennett, 1944
3.10 Julie Albright, 1974
3.10.1 Ivy Ling, 1974

This is not including the Girl of the Year dolls or the Bitty Babies or Bitty Twin dolls! Is it just me, or does this seem to be getting a bit out of hand?! By that, I mean all the others- bitty dolls and girls of today...I love the historical girls!

I remember the Christmas I got Molly M. I was nine, and wanted her more than anything else in the world. Of course, she was the first thing listed on my Christmas list. On Christmas Eve that particular year, I remember this so distinctly, like it was this past Christmas. My mother was in the kitchen and I was in the living room, poking around under the tree (come on, you know you did it too!) and I saw a box with my name on it. My heart skipped a beat, because I knew, I just knew that it was Molly. So I casually walked into the kitchen, grabbed a cookie and said "Mum, what would happen if Santa brought me something and then you and Daddy got me the same thing?" Here I thought I might get two Molly dolls! My mother didn't bat an eye, she just said "oh Lexi, you know how Santa knows when you are naughty and when you are nice? Well, he also knows what Mummy and Daddy are thinking of giving you too!" My nine-year old self was in awe.

The next morning, I opened that long, rectangular box and there was Molly McIntire. I'd never seen such a beautiful doll and I couldn't remember ever having received such a gift. To this day, she ranks in my top five best Christmas gifts ever. When I go home next month, I think I may need to bring her back to DC with me, as she's still living in NH. I may also need to find a picture or two of that Christmas morning to scan!

Did you have one of the American Girl dolls? Which one? What adventures did you two go on?


Lacey Bean said...

I didn't have an American Girl Doll, but my cousin Samantha ( had the Samantha doll (figures, right?) and one time the doll's arm broke, so they sent it off the the American Girl Doll hospital, and they fixed it, and also fixed her hair, since it was a hot mess and sent back instructions on how to keep it neat. Haha.

Anonymous said...

i guess i missed this craze by a year or three but i remember hearing about it.
i guess it's like anything else, market the hell out of it while you can. keep creating new product until people stop buying. that's business for ya. though i imagine it's businesses like this that take the first hits in today's economy.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

I'm a bit too old to have experienced American Girl dolls but I was ALL about Madam Alexander. Sadly - I really played with them, so not collector quality display pieces for me. I pretty much trashed my Little Women dolls. But I prefer to call it "well loved."

Janssen said...

My two sisters and I all go American Dolls for Christmas one year - oh my word, there has never been a toy we played with as much and for as many years.

I had Addy, and my sisters had Kirsten and Samantha. I miss those days.

Ohmygoshi said...

I have Samantha! Oh how I loved her and all her early 1900s charm. I so SO wanted her party pinafore and dress but they were so expensive! My mom made her a party dress instead, and a matching one for me...i still have both!! A few years later I got one of the "modern" girls as well. Now they both sit on my top shelf as a constant reminder of how much fun it was to be a kid :)

Maris said...

Heh. I had Kirsten and Felicity. I wanted Kirsten b/c she was blond and so was I. I actually dressed UP as Kirsten when I was in third grade. My mom's friend made me the dress, the bonnet OH GOD I hope I never run for president otherwise those pictures will surely be the end of me.

Maris said...

Oops. I should add that it was for HALLOWEEN. I didn't just like, rock the Kirsten outfit causally.

Lauren said...

Oh man. I wanted those dolls so bad when I was young! I really wanted either the Samantha (since i'm brunette) or Kristen dolls, but my parents couldn't afford them. So, instead I had knock off ones named Sonia and Sally and I loved them very much.

My cousin got Samantha, Felicity, and Kristen. Even with my new dolls, I was still incredibly jealous. :)

Have you been to the American Dolls museum in NY? It's actually really cute.

Ashley D said...

I loved American Girl dolls! I had no idea there were no many now. I thought there were maybe... 7. Anyway, I have Samantha when I was younger and I looooved her!

The Northerner said...

I have Samantha. I can't believe she is retired!

Rachel said...


I have three of those in the back of my car right now because I scavenged them from my mom's!

I think there were only five when I had them. I distinctly remember Felicity. She was my favorite.

Awww...I hope I have a little girl someday.

Playful Professional said...

I had Felicity and loved her but I always thought Samantha was beautiful :) I think my favorite was when you could create your own.

LindzML said...

Kirsten was my girl (since my family is Scandinavian and from Minnesota and she was Scandanavian and moved to Minnesota). My family gave more to Pleasant Company than I'd care to remember. Good times. I had no clue there were so many new dolls, though.