Thursday, October 3, 2013

Throwback Thursday: Topsy Removed From eBay Search

For the next few weeks or for as long as I see fit, I will blog about a vintage or older doll in a Throwback Thursday post. This is the first.

Nancy Ann Storybook Topsy, hard plastic version, circa 1948-1950

In February 2012, I received the above hard plastic Nancy Ann Storybook  (NASB) Topsy, a circa 1948-1950 replica of the company's original 1930s bisque version of the same doll.  As described in my original post about this doll, she represents the character, Topsy, from Harriet Beecher Stowe's book, Uncle Tom's Cabin: Or, Life Among the Lowly, which was written/published when American slavery was still in full force. 

Except for medium used, the hard plastic Topsy is almost identical to the bisque version.  Unlike the bisque version, the hard plastic doll's neck is jointed and the legs are jointed at the hips.  The bisque version has frozen legs and an unjointed neck.

After receiving the hard plastic doll as a gift, I set out to find the original bisque version.  An eBay search  revealed other NASB Topsy dolls but not the one I wanted.  So I saved the search in order to be notified of new listings.

Circa 1930s and 1948-50 Nancy Ann Storybook Topsy dolls are almost identical.

With patience and persistence, I finally found the bisque doll at a price I was willing to pay.  Prior to finding her, there had been other eBay listings that either began or ended too high for me.  This little girl showed up in a low, buy it now auction with free shipping.  After reading the description and determining that the doll was in fact bisque, I completed the buy it now and the payment.

NASB Topsy dolls made of bisque (far left) and hard plastic (middle and far right)

The twins are joined by my original hard plastic Topsy made during the late 1940s-1950s after the head sculpt was changed and sleep eyes were added.  My dear friend knew that I wanted a bisque Topsy that uses the original sculpt, which is what she thought she was purchasing when I received the twin to my newly acquired bisque doll.

Now that I have the one I've long desired, "bisque Nancy Ann Storybook Topsy" and "black Nancy Ann Storybook doll" have been removed from my saved eBay searches. 


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  1. These dolls have such personality and the eye design makes them all look different. Based on your final photo, the 1st doll looks mischievous, like, "Yeah, I did it and what you gonna do about it?!" The second doll is all, "It wasn't me, I didn't have nuthin' to do with it." And the third is very, "I cannot be bothered with these two."

    What precious girls!

    1. Great personality assessments, Muff.

      The ones I refer to as twins, except for material used, were made when the NASB Doll Company employed doll artists to hand paint the eyes. No two hand painted ones are ever alike, but I imagine each artist had their own style and among their dolls similarities existed. Machines have replaced those skilled artisans who were able to create personality with the stroke of a paint-dipped brush.



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