From Princess to Queen. Her Majesty Elizabeth II and Her Dolls

What little girl doesn't someday wish that she could be a princess? Imagine twirling around in an ornate ball gown while descending from the velvet seats of a royal horse-drawn carriage! Certainly every girl dreams of wearing a bejeweled tiara resting carefully upon her head! Perhap it is for thi reason we are so taken with the lives of royalty. For doll collectors, it is our fascination with Great Britain' Queen Elizabeth II and the dolls that were made in Her Majesty's likeness.

From childhood to marriage and from motherhood to coronation, Queen Elizabeth Il has had the milestones of her life preserved in dolls. This year, Her Majesty proudly celebrates her Diamond Jubilee, marking her 60th year of reign, the longest reign of a British monarch second to Queen Victoria's reign of 63 years. In celebration of this jubilee, let us examine the history of Her Majesty's life from Princess to Queen through her dolls.


BY ELIZABETH K. SCHMAHL


Princess Elizabeth Doll history
Left: Circa 1930 Postcard of Princess Elizabeth as a young child. Right: 18" SFBJ portrait models of Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret. Photo courtesy of Theriault's Antique Doll Auctions.

Source: Summer 2012 • Doll News, Pages 58-77


Childhood


Princess Elizabeth Alexandra Mary of York was born in 1926 in London. She was the daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York who would later become King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in 1936. (Queen Elizabeth wa later referred to as "Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother" to eliminate confusion with her daughter Prince Elizabeth who wa to become Queen Elizabeth II, tbe subject of thi article). A darling young child with a radiant smile, Princess Elizabeth quickly captivated people's hearts. The public began to yearn for news, pictures, and memorabilia and very soon, o did the doll market. One

of the first firms to create a doll in the likenes of Princes Elizabeth was the German firm, Schoenau and Hoffmeister in 1929. According to the Coleman's Collector s Encyclopedia of DolJs, this doll was con idered a portrait doll depicting Elizabeth as a three-year-old child. The dolls range from 14" to 24".