Depression Era Toys: Rag Doll

Kansan recalls being given a rag doll for Christmas during the depression era.

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I have always loved dolls. For Christmas Mom made me a rag doll one year. In the depression era doll heads could be bought for a small price. So Mom got one, made a body and attached it. Made a dress and slip, stockings and a checkered dress out of a flour sack, but the most wonderful of all was a pair of high-topped black shoes with seams so they looked real.

We drew names for Christmas at school. We had no money for that but I'm sure Mom did what she could.

The Christmas Eve program came. The teacher had decorated a tree and to my eyes it was beautiful. Up in that tree was a sweet baby doll about eight inches tall. I just knew whoever had drawn this other girl's name had gotten her that doll. I just knew it was hers, but wished it were mine, and when the name was read it WAS mine!

Hazel Caruthers
Burlington, Kansas


Back in 1955 a call went out from the editors of the then Capper’s Weekly asking for readers to send in articles on true pioneers. Hundreds of letters came pouring in from early settlers and their children, many now in their 80s and 90s, and from grandchildren of settlers, all with tales to tell. So many articles were received that a decision was made to create a book, and in 1956, the first My Folks title – My Folks Came in a Covered Wagon – hit the shelves. Nine other books have since been published in the My Folks series, all filled to the brim with true tales from Capper’s readers, and we are proud to make those stories available to our growing online community.