Collections

Barbara Ann Scott Doll

Significance 

In 1942, Barbara Ann Scott of Ottawa became the first female figure skater to land a double lutz jump in competition. She was only thirteen years old. She later captured the hearts of Canadians by winning European, World, and Olympic figure skating titles in 1948. The newspapers of the day called her "a tiny exquisite doll" and "a dainty blonde dervish". Manufacturers and department stores made fortunes from Barbara Ann Scott merchandise, ranging from dolls to skating costumes. This Barbara Ann Scott doll was designed by Bernard Lipfert and mass-produced by the Reliable Toy Company of Toronto from 1948 until 1954.
It is a ‘composition’ doll, made of a mixture of glue and sawdust, which created a more durable material than bisque (or porcelain). The doll has a moveable head, arms, and legs. She has sleeping blue eyes, an open smiling mouth. Her blond saran hair indicates that she was made after 1953. Her skates and headband are original; but her skating costume is not. The doll, which sold well until 1954, came with a hangtag shaped like an ice skate, a letter from Barbara Ann, a pair of shoes and a small book about the skater, although these are not in the Museum’s collection.

Date Range 
c. 1953
Artist 
Bernard Lipfert
Place of Manufacture 
Reliable Toy Company, Toronto
Dimensions 
40 cm high
Catalog Number 
H982.71.2a-f
Donor 
Shirley Sullivan, 1982