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Cameo Doll Co.
By Jeff Brooks
The Answer Guys
Vintage & Modern Electronics

History
The Cameo Doll Company was founded in 1922. It produced many of its early pieces using wood and composition parts designed to emulate classic wood toys.
Joseph Kallus was the designer of dolls for Cameo Doll Co. and for other doll manufacturers including Ideal Novelty and Toy Co. and Effanbee Doll Corp. His elastic strung, wood segmented dolls were often used as advertising dolls. Some of his famous dolls were: King Little, Pinocchio, Betty Boop, RCA Radiation, and Bandy. "Doll Reader" magazine of August 1996 on page 62 features a good article on this artist. 

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RCA Radiotron
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Above is the Radio Corporation of America Radiotron advertising figure. It is constructed of wood and composition. It's superhero in styling and stands approximately 16 inches tall.  He has elf styled red boots and a nice tunic with Radiotron sash. Other wood parts are bright primary colors of blue, red and yellow. His hat is styled after the envelope shape of a late 1920ís radio tube and is made of wood. The face hair and the tunic are composition. This doll has its original paint. The cuts in the hands are for holding cards that would tell of specials or prices on a radio positioned near the doll.
Photos by Jeff Brooks.

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GE Radio
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This is the GE Radio advertising figure. It is constructed of wood and composition. Itís marching band leader styling has lead to the nickname of Bandy. It stands approximately 19 inches tall and the stand is included. He has black shoes and a full size baton which is usually missing or broken. The face hair and the uniform double button jacket are composition. This doll has its original paint. The Bandy was often placed in radio shop window displays of the late 1920ís and through the 1930ís a featured radio would be  positioned near the doll.
Photos by Jeff Brooks.

Below are a few photos of Cameo Doll Co. products. My favorites by Cameo are Betty Boop, Howdy Doody, The Hotpoint Man, Superman and the RCA Radiotron Man.

Photo by Jim Sneed from the collection of Francis Fung

Betty Boop


Photo by Jim Sneed from the collection of Francis Fung

Superman


1935 Advertisement

1936 Advertisement

1938 Advertisement