Monday, April 19, 2010

Memory Monday; the case of the rubber doll

I've noticed a recurring theme in some of my old childhood photos from the early 1960's; it's the case of the rubber doll, which if you look carefully can be found on the floor, in my lap, or clutched in my arms. Yes, I still have this doll, but I don't know where she came from.
I assume my parents gave her to me for a Christmas gift in 1961, as she first appears in the photo above, dated Dec 1961, but I seem to be more engrossed with the wooden ducks!
The doll's original clothes are long gone. I'd love to recreate this dress for her; it has a red bodice with a white skirt and red flowers scattered across the background. The doll's shoes and socks are painted on. I remember my Mom using a bobby pin to push a red ribbon through a hole in the doll's pony tail, and then my Mom tied it into a bow.
The picture above was taken on a very hot July day, when my Mom's sister, Emma, visited from Oregon with her family.
This is one of my all time favourite childhood photos.

Here the rubber doll has a change of clothes!
Aren't we cute? I don't ever remember giving the doll a name, but she was obviously a favourite!

We loved to play in my parent's bed on Saturday mornings. This photo was taken in the house on Monmouth Ave. I still have dreams about this room.
Another photo, December 1961, with my rubber doll.

November 1961: behind my Mom's sewing chest.
I can barely remember this little house on Monmouth Ave.
There's my friend, the rubber doll.

February 1963: playing in the small back yard on Euclid Ave.
The stroller was blue...and I believe that's my rubber doll in it, but the photo is too blurred to really see.


October 1962: Leona and I with myself talking Leona's ear off, while holding my favourite rubber dolly, and another favourite, a rubber teddy. Rubber seemed to be the toy of choice in the early 60's.
These are all the photos I could find of the rubber doll, made by the Reliable company in Canada.


I discovered this image in the 1959 Reliable Toy Company Doll Catalogue for 1959 online on
 June 21, 2016. She even had a name; Billie.

By Loretta Houben


4 comments:

Linda said...

those are sooo cute, Loretta!! I have a rubber doll too but she is black...with painted on shoes too. The one you have looks familiar to me and I might have had one like that too.

Shelley said...

Your photos are so sweet....I would love to see one of you and your dolly together in this day and time...
Seems like you loved her very much...I don't have any of my original dolls but I do have lots of memories of them. I loved them all very much...blessings

Anonymous said...

at least mummsy thot we should have clothes on, look at melody, no clothes at all...

Anonymous said...

i am never going to post a comment again! it took 4 (four) times before the computer decided i did actually type the characters i saw in the picture above correctly
i give up i really really do i don't need any more hassles in my life. . .