Wednesday, March 30, 2011

D. G. W. Auctioneers and Appraisers
to Auction Izannah Walker Doll

May 1st Auction
Auction Description:
American, large Izannah Walker Doll. All cloth doll with pressed and oil painted facial features and hair, applied sculpted ears, painted blue eyes, black pupils, outlined eyes, brows, closed mouth. Muslin body with painted limbs. Old recover on torso. Arms hand-stitched to shoulder. Stitched fingers with separate thumbs. Stitched toes. Circa 1870. Height: 25" (63cm) approx.
For more information, visit the  
D. G. W. Auctioneers & Appraisers site.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Izannah Walker Doll to Be
Auctioned by Theriault's April 9th

This 18" doll will be auctioned April 9, 2011 by Theriault's.   

Description of the doll from catalog:  
18"(46 cm.) Cloth doll with pressed and oil-painted facial features and hair, center-parted hair with two ringlet curls in front of each beautifully-stitched ear, and extending around her entire head, shaded brown eyes with thin black outlines and red eyeliner, lightly-stroked brows, rounded nose, closed mouth with accent line between the pale lips, muslin stitch-jointed body with oil-painted stiffened hands, defined applied thumbs, bare feet. Condition: generally excellent, some very-light typical craquelure on face. Comments: circa 1865, Izannah Walker, the Pawtucket, Rhode Island doll creator, who obtained a patent for her dolls in 1873 but likely had been making them for some time previously. 

This particular doll originally belonged to Mary Whitney Carter who owned the doll as a child in Pawtucket. One of the family's most cherished possessions, it remained in their care for four long generations, eventually moving to California and now coming to auction for a new home. Value Points: outstanding preservation of the ringlet-curled doll with superb painting, wearing fine antique costume including red kidskin shoes and woven straw bonnet, and owning very frail remnants of original Walker costume. Along with wooden paint-decorated chair that she has sat in for 150 years. The Izannah Walker doll has rightfully been compared to the prized American folk art canvas paintings of William Matthew Prior (1806-1873).

Update:  Sold for a hammer price of $20,000

Thursday, March 24, 2011

What's In a Name?
Izannah, Isannah,
Isana, Izana

Names are funny things.  They define you in some way.  I was given the name Dixie.  I live in the north and don't often find people who share my name.   People have found an amazing ways to spell it.   Izannah faced the same thing with her name.   Even in her time, it was recorded in a number of different ways in censuses taken.   In the 1880 census above Izannah's name seems to be Isamab.  Click the image to enlarge it.  We know it's her though, because she is listed with her friend Emeline B. Whipple who shows up in other censuses with Izannah.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Izannah Walker Doll
Morphy's April 2nd Auction

Morphy's will be auctioning the above Izannah Walker doll on April 2nd, 2011.   It is described as follows in their catalog:
"Beautiful example from the 1860s, prior to the patent date. Painted oilcloth head, shoulders, lower arms, and lower legs with rare and earlier bare feet. Painted corkscrew curls in front of each exposed ear and short curls framing the forehead. Bulging painted eyes and painted mouth with hint of a smile. Wears a off-the-shoulder gold and red printed cotton dress, antique under garments, brown leather moccasin style shoes, and red bead necklaces. Comes with a rocker with woven seat in back. A few areas of crazing and slight splits to fabric above nose; possible minor old retouch above eyes and in open space above nose bridge. One slight bare spot to top of head and one horizontal split to hair in back.  Condition (Good - Very Good). Size 19" T. "

UPDATE - the hammer price for this doll at auction was $8,000.

Please visit the Morphy's site for more information.  

A Pictorial Directory of Dolls<br> Featured on the Izannah Walker Chronicles

My mission for this blog in 2008 was to create the site I wished existed - a site for doll makers and collectors who love Izannah Walker dol...