The Poppy Doll Company had been
making dolls until Dr. H. T Chin, a dentist, purchased the company in about 1924
to make the toy doll he and his wife had developed. Dr. Chin patented the
mechanism for his invention in 1924. (See Scarey Anns patent).
The invention consisted of a lever on the lower back of the toy that was
connected to a spring loaded rod that drove a hair piece or sometimes a hat and
nose of the doll. All Scarey Anns were hand turned on a lathe and hand painted.
Great variety therefore exists in samples found today. Josephine Bissell, a
woman who painted these dolls, passed away in 2001.
All Scareys had factory names but most of these names are now lost.
We know that the "Black"
dolls were called "Picaninny".
Scarey Anns were made in great numbers and sold all over the
world until 1929 when the beginnings of the great depression took them under.
They were made mainly in Atascadero, California but also in Blue Rapids, Kansas.
For more about Blue Rapids production, see below.
To see a list and photographs of known Scarey Ann dolls, click Scarey Anns list.