This doll was made by Effanbee, in 1983.
He's wearing the classic Holmes outfit: deerstalker cap and Inverness coat. He even has the pipe.
|The coat really buttons, even if the buttons are a little large.|
The doll is vinyl and stands 16" tall.
|Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.|
The first Holmes novel was "A Study in Scarlet",published in 1887 in Beeton's Christmas Annual, and later as a book. It was one of only four full length Holmes novels written by Conan Doyle. All the other Holmes adventures he wrote were short stories. There were 56 of them.
Apart from Sherlock Holmes Sir Arthur Conan Doyle was known as a believer in the spirit world and fairies. When two young girls, cousins named Elsie Wright and Frances Griffiths, claimed to have seen and photographed what came to be known as 'The Cottingly fairies' in 1920, Conan Doyle was one of their firmest supporters, even buying each of the girls a new camera so they could take better photographs of the fairies, and publishing two articles about fairies and the Cottingly photos in The Strand.
|Frances Griffiths with 'fairies'.These days the fakery is obvious, but photography was new in those days and people believed what they saw in photos.|
|Elsie Wright with a 'brownie'.|
Years after Conan Doyle's death Elsie admitted to faking the photos using watercolour pictures she had made, attached to hat pins. Elsie died in 1988. Frances died in 1986, and also admitted that the photos were faked...
All except the last photo, known as 'the fifth photo', which Frances claimed, to the end of her life,was real.
|Yeah, ok. These three look like cutouts too.*Sigh* But what's that little face peeking through on the far right?|
This Effanbee doll is actually a really good likeness of actor Basil Rathbone.
|Basil Rathbone, Ida Lupino, and Nigel Bruce,looking younger than normal.|
|Except no ascot!|
Not so sure about that left hand though...
|I know guys wore their pants kind of high back then, but it just looks weird. He also looks a little weedy without the coat,and his head looks huge.|
Rathbone was not the first actor to play Holmes, but he's certainly one of the actors most associated with the role.
|Basil Rathbone wants you to paint him like one of your French girls.|
Rathbone first played Holmes in 1939 in "The Hound of the Baskervilles". He appeared as Holmes in 12 more films and many radio shows.
|Hound of the Baskervilles.|
|Basil Rathbone as Holmes and Nigel Bruce as a doddering Watson. "Great Scot Holmes! That was meant for us!"|
Basil Rathbone was also known as one of the best swordsmen in Hollywood. He used the skill in many of his movies, including "Robin Hood" in 1938, and "The Court Jester", in 1955.
|Basil Rathbone fencing with Danny Kaye, (right), in The Court Jester.|
By the way, that Sherlock Holmes exhibit is pretty cool. It's a traveling exhibit, so if you're into Sherlock Holmes, forensics, or solving mysteries, check it out if it comes near you. There are actual pages from a couple of Holmes books in Conan Doyle's own hand, as well as forensics displays, and a mock crime scene and murder mystery to solve with interactive exhibits.
Tomorrow we'll see another doll.