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A Web Feature by Hoag Levins Haddonfield Doll Days short spacer

Annual Festival of Doll Dealers & Displays

Haddonfield Doll Days church sign Haddonfield Doll Days display 1
This is a documentary feature on the Doll Days event that Haddonfield no longer holds. As part of the gathering, local institutions, like the Haddonfield Presbyterian Church (above, left), hosted doll craft fairs and seminars. Nearby, at the Haddonfield Historical Society, local doll-history expert Shirley Raynor (above, right) showed her rare, Swedish "Sasha" doll. With blue eyes, brown skin and universal facial characteristics, the doll was designed to represent children of all ethnic groups.

HADDONFIELD, N.J. -- For many years each November, downtown Haddonfield became an extravaganza of displays and commerce that drew thousands of enthusiasts to an annual celebration of the human race's oldest plaything: the doll.

The annual "Doll Days" wass sponsored by the Haddonfield Business and Professional Association, the Historical Society and the Elizabeth Haddon Toy and Doll Club. The festival featured doll-related events in stores and public facilities stretching nearly a mile along Kings Highway -- from the Kingsway Learning Center to Greenfield Hall.

Visitors -- who could study antique dolls at local museums, have their own dolls appraised at a local antique shop, and browse aisles of doll displays at one of the area's largest shows of contemporary dolls -- were ferried around town on the "Dolly Trolley."

Haddonfield antique dolls Haddonfield Madeline greeter
Included in the collections of antique dolls on some of the last displays were 1858 papier mache dolls (above, left) by Philadelphia dollmaker, Ludwig Greiner. A greeter dressed as the cartoon doll character "Madeline" prepared to welcome early-morning arrivals to Doll Day events. Throughout the weekend festival, other greeters dressed as Raggedy Ann and Muffy Vanderbear would also hail the crowds and pose for photos.

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Doll Days


> Doll Days:
Main Page

Doll Displays:
Public Buildings

Fall Doll Sale:
Main Show Floor

Doll Days Tea Party

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