Friday, December 24, 2010

African Warrior for Christmas, with 1920s Backstory

About this little doll: It was presented with much fanfare to my older sister by one of our first cousins, at a family reunion a number of years ago.

African Warrior Doll

When our father was still trying to make it as a farmer, he and his younger sister and her family lived in adjacent houses on their respective farming acreages. My older sister was six years old at that time, and her little cousin next door was four.

One day when they were playing together, he accidentally broke the porcelain head of her cloth-bodied baby doll. Of course, she was inconsolable, and, as an adult, for many years she would claim, with a straight face, that she'd never forgiven him.

Finally, at a family reunion where her teen-age grandsons were present along with her sons and many other relatives, this cousin, in desperation, made an elaborate speech, apologizing profusely for breaking her baby doll 70 years earlier. And he then presented her this new doll to replace the one with the broken porcelain head.

She regarded the African warrior as extremely ugly. But I think he's charming. And this year he's recycled as one of my Christmas presents from that beloved older sister.


  1. Thanks, Celia. My older sister and I enjoy telling it.

  2. The story of this doll, I'd never heard before.
    Thank you, Happy Warrior, for gracing our scene once more,
    bringing joy into our lives!


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