Now that Melody Ellison has been officially released, a member of the AGC board recently asked what doll she – a girl in 1964, directly affected by the Civil Rights struggles of the time, conscious and proud of her black heritage – would have played with.
When I tried to answer, I ashamedly realized that while my previous entries in this series did take some black dolls into account, such as Addy´s Ida Bean and the rag dolls that inspired her, most dolls that I listed are indeed white. While this reflects the market to some degree (more on that in a second), there were more black dolls around than many people are aware of.
The history of black dolls deserves a closer look, and entries of its own.
<Warning: Since this particular entry looks at black dolls up to the mid-20th century, it also includes some that reflect 19th and early 20th century stereotypes that can be offensive to a modern reader. I decided to include them (as did the linked sources I used) because that was what was available at the time, and for a long time, it was all there was.>
- January 7 – the first black hole is discovered in a neighbouring galaxy. This is the first black hole confirmed outside the Milky Way.
- January 10 – Canada, the United Kingdom and the United States launch Fraggle Rock, a worldwide program advocating peace. The series is first shown on German TV in November as Die Fraggles.