Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Dollyver Family

by Conservation

3/11/2021

behind the scenes , CAMConservation , conservation , textileconservation , Laura H. Turpin , Dollyver , doll , doll clothes

Conservation of the 24 “Dollyver” family member is finally complete! The last few dolls to cross the workbench in textile conservation included the “twins,” Mary Delphine and Annie Adelaide, and their little cousin, Phoebe. All three of these dolls were undressed so the parts that could be were cleaned and repaired. The “laundry list” included two pinafore aprons, three pairs of tiny doll drawers, three tiny doll chemises (like slips), and Phoebe’s printed cotton dress. These satisfying “before and after treatment” pairs help show their transformations. For Phoebe, a dirt line around her waist showed where her pale blue sash had protected her dress. After cleaning (and treating the delicate silk of her sash), the sash had to be positioned without the aid of the old dirt line: a fair price to pay to get her a bit fresher. Undressing also gave the opportunity to examine (and vacuum) the dolls’ bodies and document interesting, hidden details like the inked numbers on their upper thighs, including Mary Delphine’s “6” shown here. We aren’t certain what these numbers refer to, but they seem to be done by the artist, Laura Turpin.

Laura H. Turpin (1845-1920), United States, Mary Delphine, 1890-1920, cotton, silk, wire, leather, bast fiber hair, Gift of Laura H. Turpin, 1920.306; Laura H. Turpin (1845-1920), United States, Annie Adelaide, 1890-1920, cotton, silk, wire, leather, bast fiber hair, Gift of Laura H. Turpin, 1920.293; Laura H. Turpin (1845-1920), United States, Phoebe, 1890-1920, cotton, silk, wire, leather, bast fiber hair, Gift of Laura H. Turpin, 1920.309

 

Read our other blog posts about the Dollyvers to hear about how the family members of all ages have been trickling through the lab for over the last few years!

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Grandma Dollyver, 2016

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Dr. Dollworth gets an x-ray, 2018

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Miniature Textile Conservation, 2018

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Doll Transformation, 2018

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Fresh Laundry, 2018

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Café service! 2019

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Doll research pays off! 2019

Behind the Scenes in Conservation: Ragsby Dollyver, Before & After, 2019