Thursday, August 18, 2016

Exploring an 1820 Mache Doll, a final look

Back to that Note......

 So we return to that mysterious note buried within m'Ladys bodice. Its always exciting to find notes on clothing and things~ original notes, from the hands of the owner, and especially when one is not expecting them to be there! This is the difference between buying from a dealer and buying straight from an estate~ one usually gets minimal facts about an object from the latter, they're just interested in selling or liquidating as quickly as possible.

 Once the bodice was unpinned in the back, I easily retrieved the note from behind the cloth covering over the shoulderplate. There is a grubby dirt line on the shoulderplate ~ but all is quite clean and tidy underneath the protection of the bodice, and we can see there is not much fading to the finish overall. The modeling of this Ladye is wonderful and deep~ her collar bone can clearly be seen.

 And if I could take off the cover, would reveal two separately molded breasts as well....but I'm not unpicking the covering, so no need to shield your eyes~

 Beneath the covering is an original period tag, written in ink ~
"Patience" belonged to Mary Ann Forbes Hotchkiss Loaned by Mrs. Hotchkiss 12/28/50. 
The tag here, written by her Mother, Elizabeth in 1850. The child mortality rate was high during this period, and obviously Mary Ann's dolly held a special place of sacred honor in her family after her death in 1839 at the age of 12.
 There is another note stitched to dollys dress, this one reads~

 'doll belonged to Mary Ann Forbes Hotchkiss 1827-1839'

 She is a Grande Ladye too,  standing just a bit over 25" tall, it is difficult to get all of Patience in one picture~

 Her finish is all original, and still as clean and bright as the last day Mary Ann kissed her cheek. Her features are so clean and crisp, she was most definitely one of the first dolls to come from the 3 part mold used to shape her mache head

 Both her pretty ears are exposed, and she retains the deep comb marks of her elaborate molded coiffure. A trio of curls grace each side of her head

 Graceful brush strokes of hair shadow the hairline around her face.

 The deep and artistic sculpting of her features can be appreciated here~ if only Patience could speak~ I am sure she would have some wonderful stories to tell~

Mary Ann resides at the family plot, along with her parents and siblings at the Grove Street Cemetery in New Haven Connecticut~


Lyndle said...

Fascinating! Thank you for sharing! She is a very beautiful find and the notes are wonderful to have.

Dolly Blessings said...

Amazing to still have the original notes preserved with the doll. I enjoyed reading about her and seeing your lovely photos.


Oh my! How wonderful to learn her name and the name of her original mistress. And to think she was first here in Connecticut, only a few miles from where I live. I wonder where she was manufactured? Could it have been here in New England? Thank you so much for sharing the story of Patience's repair with us!

Rachael Kinnison said...

Thankyou all for visiting! Elisabeth~ no she was not made here in the USA~ she would have been a VERY expensive dolly imported to the US or bought on a trip to Europe. Her head was made in Germany. Sometimes the manufacturers made and sold the entire doll, but also alot of times they just made the heads and sent them to France where they got their bodies and were dressed for whatever target market they had in mind.

Diane Guidice said...

How very poignant......very, very touching . I was very moved to see how the doll continues to be a tender memorial to her little mistress. That glimpse into the past just seems a little more real. I can only imagine what it feels like when a note like this is discovered.