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Doll Gallery: Composition

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Composition is a mixture of various substances including plaster, glue, flour, paper or rags. It's less breakable than bisque, but often inclined to craze. Many composition dolls are unmarked, and so it's difficult to trace the manufacturers.
Beth Beth is a compostion baby doll with bent limbs. She is 15" tall, and is initialled HW on the back of her neck, which probably stands for the German manufacturers Heinrich Handwerck, from Waltershausen, who made similar dolls in the 1930s and 40s. Her long white cotton babygown, vest and bonnet were no doubt given to her by her original young owner.
Shirley is another of those pot dolls which we've looked at in previous issues of Doll Showcase. Dating from the 1940s, she is 24" high, and was possibly made by the firm of F Popper. Her skin has a brownish tinge, as do many of the pot dolls from this era. Shirley still has her original blonde mohair wig. She wears a rose-sprigged cotton dress. Shirley

Click here to see last issue's Composition Gallery.