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Dancing Dolly - I want one !!

GUEST,jojofolkagogo 11 Jan 06 - 02:40 PM
GUEST,ClaireBear 11 Jan 06 - 04:34 PM
Jimmy C 11 Jan 06 - 04:42 PM
Kaleea 11 Jan 06 - 04:49 PM
The Fooles Troupe 11 Jan 06 - 04:52 PM
Joe Offer 11 Jan 06 - 06:35 PM
Leadfingers 11 Jan 06 - 07:08 PM
Desert Dancer 11 Jan 06 - 10:37 PM
Bob Bolton 11 Jan 06 - 10:59 PM
Mrs_Annie 12 Jan 06 - 04:15 AM
GUEST,Bainbo 12 Jan 06 - 06:01 AM
GUEST,A Wandering Minstrel 12 Jan 06 - 08:15 AM
Bunnahabhain 12 Jan 06 - 08:33 AM
GUEST,jojofolkagogo 12 Jan 06 - 12:22 PM
Folkiedave 12 Jan 06 - 06:43 PM
Sandy Paton 12 Jan 06 - 11:02 PM
GUEST,jojofolkagogo 13 Jan 06 - 06:57 AM
The Fooles Troupe 13 Jan 06 - 07:05 AM
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Subject: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: GUEST,jojofolkagogo
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 02:40 PM

I want a Dancing Dolly !!

Where can I get one ???   and How much !!!

Any help much appreciated

Regards
Jo-Jo   (jojofolkagogo@yahoo.com)


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: GUEST,ClaireBear
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 04:34 PM

Do you mean a limberjack?

C


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Jimmy C
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 04:42 PM

I have a few of them. All painted different colours. I made my first one, very easy project indeed. Anyone with even basic woodworhing skills shoud be able to make one. Others I bought
(unpainted) from a wood carver in Old Quebec City, I believe the price was around $ 12.00. One has a pipe, a beard and a red wooly hat. Kids of all ages love it. I usually sing " Whiskey on a Sunday" when demonstrating it.


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Kaleea
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 04:49 PM

uh, would that be lumberFolk?


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 04:52 PM

Lark in the morning used to have some in their catalogue.

larkinam.com, I think it was.


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Joe Offer
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 06:35 PM

I got my Limberjack from Sandy and Caroline Paton at Folk-Legacy Records, http://www.folklegacy.com/.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Leadfingers
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 07:08 PM

I have always called them 'Jig Dolls' - Always good fun when someone turns up with one !


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 10:37 PM

They seem to be called "dancing dolls" in the U.K., "limberjacks" in the U.S. This site, linked on the Proffit banjo thread, has some.

~ Becky in Tucson


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Bob Bolton
Date: 11 Jan 06 - 10:59 PM

G'day,

Interestingly, I have found myself trying to track down a set of marvellously detailed and ingeniously constructed local (East coast Australia) dancing dolls, which I photographed ... just on 20 years ago!

These were made by a New South Wales dairy farmer, Charles Mill, back in the early 1890s and he had made them larger than traditional British Jig dolls, as they were for performing to larger groups. The couple, male and female, were carved in the round from local Australian Cedar (toona australis) with arms and legs jointed with a double arrangement of fencing staples ... with proper "doll's eyes" in the carved faces ... fully dressed in fitted clothes, hats, shoes and "stockings" of multi-coloured silk bindings - in the style (and "blackface" make-up)of 19th century "blackface minstrels" and 'named' "Mr & Mrs White of Blacktown".

Instead of a hand-held dowel to 'dance them, they had a 'spring' rod (probably heavy fencing wire) bolted into each back, curved down and bolted to a 'dance floor' (sounding board) of more cedar - bolted 9through a spacer) onto a smaller board that was strapped to the kne of the player - who was able to play a concertina or a small button accordion in the curved space under the spring rods ... while the dolls tap-danced in time with his knee as he tapped his foot along with the music.

The whole set: dolls, dance board, spring rods and fixings were all fitted into a wooden case, also of Australian cedar ... then easily found along the NSW coast - but now very rare.

A friend bought the concertina and accordion from Pearl Mill, the 91-year old spinster daughter of Charles ... back in 1986 and he asked me to document the dolls. I had always expected he was keeping track of them ... but a recent enquiry about copies of the photographs raised them in my mind ... and I found they had dropped out of sight. I'm hoping to pick up their trail - and see that they end up in an appropriate institution (preferably The National Museum of Australia ... or the The National Library of Australia, which has a strong committment to our musical heritage.

If I don't find them ... I fear that I am going to be obsessed into constructing something of a working replica set ... with which I may even do some performances!

Anybody interested in these dolls ... is welcome to PM me for scans of the photographs and some information from our Mulga Wire magazine of December 1986. There may also be, soon, some of the images and story on the Bush Music Club's web site: Bush Music Club (I'm about to remind our webmaster ...).

Regards,

Bob


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Mrs_Annie
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 04:15 AM

The East Anglian Traditional Music Trust has a big collection of 'jig dolls'.
You can see some pictures here:
big jig


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: GUEST,Bainbo
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 06:01 AM

Everyone seemed to call theirs "Lugless Douglas", on account of them having no ears. But I wasn't having anything so sissy. Mine was called "Manly Stanley".

I haven't seen him for years. Are you still out there, Stan?


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: GUEST,A Wandering Minstrel
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 08:15 AM

I once made a whole stack of these for a kids summer project, they are fairly easy to construct.

You need a block of soft wood for the body and a small drawer knob for the head. Glue the head to the body. The arms and legs can be made from lengths of hollow bamboo garden cane.two pieces about 2" long for each arm and each leg (to create the "Elbow" and "knee" flexion) The articulations can be managed by putting screw eyes into the body block at the "shoulders" and "hips" and tying stout string to them. the string is then threaded through the lengths of cane, and tied off at the end into screw eyes in smaller "hand" and "foot" blocks. finally drill a suitable hole in the back and insert a dowel handle (about 18" long. If you make them the right size you can use standard 11" dolls clothes to dress them

The "dancing floor" is just a 2 foot length of flat 1/4 inch marine plyboard

to play, sit crosslegged on a chair with the plank tucked under the bottom leg and the dowel handle between the legs so that the doll "stands" on the board. by slapping the plank in time to music the doll will dance.


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Bunnahabhain
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 08:33 AM

I've made one of these, for another Mudcatter whose family had wandered off with hers. As noted, they're not difficult to make if you have any woodworking skills.

It felt right with long pins for joints, rather than screw eyes, but I can see that would be alot easier for kids to do.

Fun little things, but learning a form of step dance is more fun than having the jig doll do it. It does have certain advantages in very confined spaces though...


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: GUEST,jojofolkagogo
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 12:22 PM

Hyaall

MANY MANY THANKS FOR SUCH A GREAT RESPONSE

but ....

I dont care what they are called, I WANT ONE !!!!!

no,i can DEFINITELY say I have no skills whatsoever, woodworking or otherwise.

Yep, Annie, I know about Trad day in Suffolk, but I repeat, I WANT ONE

I dont wanna "look" at the dam things !!! - I wanna play !!

If there is anyone living in or around Essex or Kent willing to make me one, or sell me one, I would be most grateful with plenty of dosh !! (well, within reason !!)

How about it, Manley Stanley ???

Any offers ?
once again, thanks for great response
Regards
Jo-Jo             jojofolkagogo.com


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Folkiedave
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 06:43 PM

If you would like to contact me either PM or dave@deyre.plus.com

I am sure I can help.

Dave


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: Sandy Paton
Date: 12 Jan 06 - 11:02 PM

Using hardwoods gives a sprightlier dance and MUCH better acoustics. Might be a bit harder to construct, but the result is worth the extra effort. "LimberJack" is the name I knew for the dancing man, and that's what we have always called the ones we sell through Folk-Legacy. Over the forty years we have been offering them to the public, we have heard them called "paddle puppets", "Dancing Dans", "Dancing Sams" etc. A man in Maine told us he knew it as a "Yankee Doodle Dancer" in his childhood. The oldest one I have is a handcrafted (rather crudely) model found in an antique store in northeastern New Hampshire USA). I have a lovely photograph, possibly taken by Peter Kennedy, of old Harry Cox, the East Anglian farmworker and great ballad singer, dancing one in front of his cottage in Norfolk. Looks as though his puppet is wearing a pair of Dutch-type wooden shoes. A model I was shown from western Connecticut boasted a neatly carved top hat and boots. Inspired by our "LimberJacks," a fellow in Burlington, Vermont, carved a few splendid models clad in lumberjack-type boots.
    Amusingly, when we showed our model to the curator of the Brooklyn (NY) Children's Museum, he said had never seen one before. However, in the Museum collection was a puppet that was clearly a LimberJack, whose paddle had long-since been lost and the curator thought the hole in his back was merely a convenient way to hang him up on a wall when not in use. So much for toy specialists who fail to study folklore!
    Sandy


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: GUEST,jojofolkagogo
Date: 13 Jan 06 - 06:57 AM

Hello All

Many thanks to dave at deyre - will contact, hope you live within reason or maybe we can meet at folk fest ??

Mrs Annie, - once again many thanks for your pics of the Jig Dolls at Trad Day - have been TRYING to make it there for the last three years, and nearly got there in 2005, but something always comes up and I did not go, will try hardest to get there for 2006 !

Thanks again

Wandering Minstrel

Where is the one you made earlier !!!

Your "workshop" will no doubt help lots of others who want a dancin' dolly - but not me I am afraid, like I said I have no skills and what's more I'M A WOMAN !! (need I say more ?)

Many thanks to all

regards,
Jo-Jo


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Subject: RE: Dancing Dolly - I want one !!
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 13 Jan 06 - 07:05 AM

So knit one then!
:-)


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