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Doll (one of three)

Probably Odessa area, Delaware



13-7/8 in x 9-1/4 in x 2-1/2 in


Cotton, linen, and paint

Credit Line

Historic Odessa Foundation, The David Wilson Mansion, Inc.

Accession Number



“‘Susie’ / Feb 15 1878 / D. Corbit Warner” is written in ink on the doll’s back.

Condition Notes

The doll has overall staining from age.


Ex coll. Mrs. E. Tatnall (Mary Corbit) Warner


Mary Corbit Warner owned three that have survived among collections of The David Wilson Mansion, Inc.  For reasons now lost, each doll was named “Susie.”  In addition, each bore the name of one of her three boys, born between 1878 and 1889, all of whom died by 1911.  “John Warner” (acc. nos. 1971.1384) is photographed on the left; “D. Corbit Warner” (acc. no. 1971.1386) is in the center; and “Edward T Warner” (acc. no. 1971.1385) is on the right.  Edward the youngest, died as an infant; John from appendicitis at age 27; and D. Corbit soon after completing studies at Yale.  Mary’s husband died in 1904.

Each of the three dolls is stitched of different kinds of cloth, creating a soft and tactile rag or cloth doll.  The heads are flat-faced with painted facial features, arms and legs stick outward, and each wears “homespun” clothing that projects utility, not fashion.  Two wear printed cotton (calico) dresses and silk stockings with shoes made of glacé leather—a thin, soft material often used in gloves and women’s shoes.  One (“Edward,” 1971.1385) has black silk hair whereas the other two have a colored textile stitched in place.  Tiny buttons and buttonholes, the facial features—notably the eyes—were embroidered in satin stitches.  The clownishly painted white cheeks and dabs on the nose of one doll (“John,” 1971.1384) look like they may have been added later and may not be the work of the maker.


Zimmerman, A Storied Past, 204-206.