When illustrator and cartoonist Johnny Gruelle’s terminally ill daughter, Marcella, found a faded rag doll in her grandmother’s attic, he painted a new, smiling face on the toy. Naming it Raggedy Ann after two poems by his friend James Whitcomb Riley, “The Raggedy Man” and “Orphan Annie,” he made up a series of stories around this character to entertain his only child, who loved to spend hours playing dolls.

After her death in 1916, Gruelle wrote and illustrated 25 storybooks based on those tales. Responding to the series’ popularity, in 1918, Gruelle and his family made several dozen dolls to sell with the books, and later that year, Gruelle licensed the publisher, the P.F. Volland Company, to manufacture the dolls based on his 1915 patent for an all-cloth doll with shoe-button eyes, a painted face, brown yarn hair, a dress, pantaloons, a pinafore, stripped legs, and black cloth shoes.

Soon after the dolls were sold, Gruelle received a package from a childhood playmate of his mother, who explained that their mothers had made a pair of boy-and-girl companion dolls for their two children. In the package, she had sent him Raggedy Ann’s “twin brother,” Andy, and soon the family started to license dolls of Raggedy Andy and other characters from the books, including Beloved Belindy and the Camel with the Wrinkled Knees, as well as coloring books, puzzles, and games. All are hot collectors’ items today.

It is rumored that the original P.F. Volland dolls had a real candy heart, but after parents complained the candy was switched out with a cardboard heart. Mollye Goldman was the first, in 1935, to produce the dolls with an “I Love You” heart imprinted on the chest.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)



This densely packed index of antique and vintage dolls claims to offer over 10,000 images of dolls from the 1800s … [read review or visit site]

Vintage Dolls of the 50s

Vintage Dolls of the 50s

Rhonda Wilson's collection of 1950s dolls, organized by name (Ginny and friends, Littlest Angel and friends, etc.) … [read review or visit site]

Kaylees Korner of Collectible Dolls

Kaylees Korner of Collectible Dolls

Kaylee's extensive collection of vintage dolls from the 1930s to 90s. Click the balloons to browse. Though Kaylee s… [read review or visit site]

Museum of Childhood

Museum of Childhood

Embrace your inner child on this website from the Victoria and Albert Museum, filled with high-quality images and i… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Awake/asleep Raggedy Ann & Andy By GeorgeneVintage Georgene Gruelle Raggedy Ann Doll~ Great Original Outfit~ VgcPrimitive Fall Raggedy Ann Civil War Print Pumpkin Doll Folk Art Raggedy Ann DolPrimitive 8.5" Raggedy Annie Doll Ann Folk Art Ornie Shelf Sitter Rusty Tin PrimVintage Raggedy Andy Doll 1930's By J. Gruelle & Volland1946 Original Raggedy Ann Doll 23" Tagged Johnny Gruelle's Silsby Raggedy Ann By Gerogene All Original13" Primitive Raggedy Ann Doll Blue Dress Patched Apron Stitched Face W/7" Doll Primitive Santa Claus,,raggedy Ann, Handmade In Usa, April CumminsAnri Raggedy Ann Wood Carving 1976 Bobbs-merrill Georgenne Black Outline Nose Raggedy AndyPrimitive Folk Art Sweet Raggedy Ann Doll "hope"Anri Genuine Wood Carving "raggedy Andy" Mint Bobbs-merrill Co. 1976 Raggedy Ann Halloween Costumes Plus SizeDanbury Mint Raggedy Ann & Andy Christmas Tree SleighVintage Holly Hobbie Rag Doll Knickerbocker & Raggedy Ann Asleep/awake DollRaggedy Ann And Andy Doll Lamps Kids Room Bedroom Vintage Nursery DecorRaggedy Ann & Andy Latch Hook Rug Kit 37812 NibMadame Alexander Marcella Takes A Trip W/raggedy Ann & Andy1947 Johnny Gruelle's Own Raggedy Ann Doll / Georgene Novelties New York City Vintage Knickerbocker Raggedy Ann Doll 35" "the Original" - Original Box #0035The Raggedy Ann And Andy Porcelain 16" Collector Doll Set. Looks DanburyGirls 24 Mo Orient Expressed Smocked Raggedy Ann Heart Back To School Dress1971 15" Raggedy Ann Knickerbocker (no. 0001) Original Box Big Lot 1960's Cut Paper Dolls Disney Movie Stars Raggedy Ann Doll House Etc Handmade 4 Pc Raggedy Ann Dress For A 18-20''doll Made By Jodi LynnRaggedy Ann And Andy #1 High Grade First Issue Dell File Copy Comic 1964 Vf-nm1:12 Scale Dollhouse, Raggedy Ann & Andy Dolls, About 1 1/2 Inch TallLimited Edition Arcola Collector Raggedy AnnPrimitive~folk Art~ Raggedy Ann~***~raggedy Angel Ornament***~Pattern Primitive Raggedy Ann & Black Doll W/ Heart Uncut Oop Off The Beam RarePattern Primitive Raggedy Ann Doll Quilt Dress Uncut Oop By Dolls By Vida RareRaggedy Ann Ceramic FigurineRaggedy Ann The Tattered Rabbit 77th Anniversary Museum Collection SewingHandmade Summer Three Piece Dress For 20 Inch Raggedy Ann Made By Rose 3 Raggedy Ann And Andy Cookie Jars The Original Raggedy Ann Stories By Johnny Gruelle 1918 (donohue & Co.)Vintage Knickerbocker Raggedy Ann & Andy Cloth Camel With The Wrinkled Knees Handmade Christmas In July Three Piece Dress For 20 Inch Raggedy Ann By Rose Lot Of Raggedy Ann And Andy Figurines1971 15" Raggedy Andy Knickerbocker (no. 0003) Original Box Plaid Raggedy Andy Fabric 3 1/3 Yards1970's View-master + Raggedy Ann & Fairy Tale Reels (7) In Vintage Lunch Box Raggedy Ann The Tattered Rabbit 77th Anniversary Museum Collection Mint!Primitive Raggedy Ann Doll "bonnie Fall Pumpkin Dress / Pumpkin Ornie Folk ArtJohnny Gruelle- Raggedy Ann's Sunny SongsRaggedy Ann Special Edition DollsPrimitive Raggedy Ann Fall/autumn Annie DollNice Unique "raggedy Ann & Andy Country/primitive" Wood Wall Shelf! By Enesco!Primitive Raggedy Ann Americana Rusty Star AnnieRaggedy Ann And Andy #31 Fnvf Golden Age Christmas Issue Racist Doll Depiction1928 Book Raggedy Ann's Magical Wishes By Johnny GruelleLimited Edition Storybook Raggedy Ann With Camel1:12 Scale Dollhouse, Raggedy Ann & Andy Dolls, About 1 1/8 Inch TallPrimitive Folk Art Raggedy Ann Doll One Cottage CuteRaggedy Ann And Andy #4 High Grade Silver Age Dell File Copy Comic 1966 Vf-nm43"x76" Daisy Kingdom #1755 Raggedy Ann Chalkboard Cotton Fabric Alphabet LetterRaggedy Ann & Andy Wood Shelf DollsFolk Raggedy Ann & AndyLarge Vintage 1970's Raggedy Ann Doll: Over 3 Ft Tall!

Recent News: Raggedy Ann and Andy Dolls

Source: Google News

Indiana Pork Tenderloin Sandwich: Redefining Sandwiches Since 1908
Willamette Week, July 21st

Nonetheless, Indiana is the birthplace of American greats such as James Dean, David Letterman and the Raggedy Ann doll. It's most known for a healthy corn supply, a vast Amish population, the Indy 500, Notre Dame athletics and a town named Santa Claus ...Read more

Emma Michael celebrates 100th birthday
Oconee Enterprise, July 21st

When she was a year old, cartoonist John B. Gruelle received a patent for his Raggedy Ann doll. On her 23rd birthday, Amelia Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan were last heard from over the Pacific Ocean while attempting to make the first equatorial ...Read more

Pork Tenderloin Sandwich: Redefining Sandwiches Since 1908
Willamette Week, July 20th

Nonetheless, Indiana is the birthplace of American greats such as James Dean, David Letterman and the Raggedy Ann doll. It's most known for a healthy corn supply, a vast Amish population, the Indy 500, Notre Damn athletics and a town named Santa Claus ...Read more

The doll is inside the house in the trailer for The Conjuring spinoff Annabelle
A.V. Club, July 18th

In a film full of memorable scares, The Conjuring's most notable gimmick is Annabelle, the diabolical Raggedy Ann doll director James Wan transformed into an archetypal creepy, antique plaything for the movie. She's so notable, in fact, that Annabelle...Read more

Now is the Summer of Our Discontent
CounterPunch, July 18th

Now is the summer of our discontent. Banned bombs, Made in America, rain down once again on the world's largest open-air concentration camp, mercilessly. Photos of lifeless babies pulled out like Raggedy Ann dolls from Gaza's burning debris make you ...Read more

Quilt Guild names show winners
Gering Citizen, July 17th

First place in the Miniature Quilts category went to Marlene Huston of Gering for “Wee Sailboats” and in second place was Jan Sears of Kimball for “Raggedy Ann and Andy.” In the This and That category, Judy Hoatson of Scottsbluff placed first for her...Read more

Raggedy Ann & Andy say, 'See you at the Ohio Hills Folk Festival in Quaker City!'
The Daily Jeffersonian, July 7th

Cecil Hall makes his way around two iconic Raggedy Ann and Andy figures that have greeted guests to the annual Ohio Hills Folk Festival in Quaker City for many years. They were made by Cecil's wife, Fran, and son, Steve. Each year they place them in...Read more

Nick Cannon Talks Living With Lupus, Going on 7 Years With Mariah Carey and ...
E! Online, June 30th

"They're like the new Raggedy Ann and Andy," the Wild 'N Out and America's Got Talent host joked, 'the adventures of Roc 'n' Roe,' to see my kids come to life in a story book and all this other stuff." Where does he find the time—and the energy—to...Read more