These 8 dolls are part of the Alpaugh family’s collection, although our co-founder, Hazel Alpaugh-Astle, was not sure of their original owners. Hazel called them “wagon head dolls”, referring to the Covered Wagon china head dolls of the 1840s and 1850s. While a couple of these dolls certainly fit the description of covered wagon dolls with their pioneer-style outfits, most are certainly the Highbrow china head dolls of the 1860s and 1870s as seen in their more formal clothing and fancier painted hairstyles.
Two dolls in this group that definitely stand out are #4 and #8, which appear to be boy dolls with shorter male hairstyles. While most china head dolls of the mid-1800s depicted women and girls, men and boys were also made in smaller quantities.
The dolls in this group were manufactured between 1840 and 1880. China head dolls were glazed, and as a result they have a shinier finish and are impermeable to water. Unglazed china is referred to as bisque (See our Bisque Head Dolls here).
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