Pen Wiper Doll

I was so very, very excited to stumble across one of these pen wiper dolls in such excellent condition. The doll is intact. The pen wiper is intact.

This pen wiper doll stands 2 and a quarter inches tall. Her arms and legs are moveable. I am not entirely sure if her legs are wired and meant to move. I am not going to fuss with them. Her painting is very nicely done, especially for this scale. (I am noticing this size penny doll often has too quickly painted eyes and mouth that aren’t always where the eyes and mouth belong.) Her hair is reddish blonde, not the most common of doll hair colors. Her pen wipers skirt is made of 24 wool triangles fanning around her body, 12 red and 12 tan. These are gathered together at her chest and feet. I can not tell if there is additional threads or an adhesive at the center. I was hoping this would tell me more about the construction of this type of pen wiper. Her little feet stick out at the bottom. She has a slight lean to one side as the wool is curved. The wool is dense but not thick. It is also not fuzzy. I do not see a sign of use, meaning no ink is left on her. The top of her pen wiper dress is a single red ribbon stitched in place and tied in a bow at back. She has a lace collar. Dating the lace may help date her. Currently, I am going to leave that an open second half of the nineteenth century.

Oh, her name is now Holly.

Here is Holly along side Hope, the penny doll.

Because all tiny dolls need a palm photo:


This pen wiper is quite similar to those in the Mount Lebanon Shaker Museum:


Dolls of 2019

Okay. It is entirely possible probable that I got a little carried away with dolls this year. I love them. I do.

I’ve also come to understand Grandma’s love for them better. I learned a lot from them. I am facinated by the way they were made into pen wipers and pin cushions. I am realizing I shouls look into a glass case for the littlest ones.

Here are the dolls that came to me this year. I’ve linked any blog posts about them if they have one.

TBN (to be named)?arrived for my birthday. This poor doll still needs clothes.

Bonnie, the bonbon doll



TBN, the Ag Fair pin cushion doll

Ity and Bity, the original pen wiper pair

TBN, the Ag Fair pen wiper doll


Hope, the tiniest penny doll

Holly, the original pen wiper