Tuesday, March 31, 2009

An Initial List of People & Agencies Connected with Cloth & Composition Dolls in Hong Kong

1. Ada Lum - cloth dolls (attached ears and individual fingers) (see previous post)

2. Michael Lee (Micale, Mica-le) - composition and cloth (1946-1996) (see previous post)

3. Tripod Mark - composition & cloth dolls (attached ears and individual fingers)

4. Crown Brand - composition http://breezeb.tripod.com/dollschinese.html

5. The Christian Family Service Center (related to the Church of Christ in China) - a handiwork project which employs 125 families - composition?
A.B.F.M.S. in Hong Kong, "Ling Ling Say Say which, broadly interpreted, means Miscellaneous." the Hong Kong Peak Oct 1968

6. Hong Kong Christian Service HKCS (merger of Hong Kong Church World Service & the Hong Kong Christian Welfare and Relief Council -1967) - "the Handwork Department gives work to 116 workers who because they are (disabled) or for other reasons not easily employable would otherwise be dependent on welfare assistance" - cloth dolls (tagged?)
A.B.F.M.S. in Hong Kong, "Hong Kong Christian Service." the Hong Kong Peak Oct 1968

7. Lutheran World Federation Project - cloth dolls (most seem to have silk outfits, yarn hair, and embroidered features including the ears in black; the fingers are stitched, but usually not separated) These dolls seem very similar to the HKCS dolls which is understandable since in January 1976, "the Lutheran World Service (Federation) merged with the Hong Kong Christian Service and became the service arm of the Hong Kong Christian Council." (http://hkcs.org/about/overview-e.html)

1. The Catholic Women's League "formed Operation China Doll in the United States and marketed 25,000 economically priced cloth dolls made by Hong Kong's refugee women."
Surface, Bill, and Jim Hart. FREEDOM BRIDGE! MARYKNOLL IN HONG KONG . New York: COWARD-McCANN, Inc., 1963.156.

3. SERRV International (created 1949 by the Church of the Brethren, now independent) "The name SERRV is an acronym for Sales Exchange for Refugee Rehabilitation and Vocation.... The program grew from assisting WWII refugees to working with impoverished people throughout the world. SERRV began importing handicrafts from the world's least developed countries as a way to alleviate poverty. By 1960, with the help of Church World Service, a nation-wide network of churches were selling SERRV crafts as part of their mission work."

Dolls maufactured on the mainland:
1. Shaohsing Industrial Mission, Shaohsing, Chekiang Province, China (now Shaoxing Zhejiang) - miniature Chinese mission cloth dolls usually attached to a card.

"It is estimated that the population numbers three hundred thousand, of whom about one-quarter are engaged in the manufacturing of spirit money. You probably know that this is paper money in various shapes, covered with a thin coating of tin-foil and used in the idol worship of the temples. You can easily understand the acuteness of the problem of a man or woman who, engaged in this business, learns to know Jesus Christ and wants to acknowledge him in church- membership. He can not go on with his business and be true to his new-found faith, nor can he give it up and readily find anything else to do. How are we help- ing him to meet this situation ? Miss Dowling of Shaohsing began the manufacture of dolls and thus started an industry which now employs two hundred people, largely women, who are free to worship their Saviour without losing their means of livelihood. It also gives independence to some who can not live at home after they have become Christians. Today there is a successful business built up in Shaoh-sing, not only in the manufacturing of all kinds of Chinese dolls, but also in the cross-stitch work which is seen so much at present on luncheon sets and handker-chiefs."

A set of five family member dolls, ranging in size from about 3"(largest) to 2" (smallest) & still attached to the card bearing the mission name, just raised a bid of $107.50 on ebay (but the reserve price was not met). Other cardless ones have sold from $25-28.

2. And of course the exquisitely hand-carved wooden dolls with elaborately detailed costumes created by the Door of Hope Mission - Shanghai (early 1900's)
Kimport dolls - was one importer of the Door of Hope dolls

Lotz Door of Hope page

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