American Girl Dolls

American Girl Dolls

American Girl is a line of dolls that is marketed towards young girls, released on May 5, 1986. The dolls are 18 inches tall and come from various ethnicities, religions, and social classes from different eras in history. Each doll is sold with a book that provides a backstory for the doll and details the experiences and adventures of the character from the character’s point of view.

Initially, the stories and dolls focused on different periods of American history but have since expanded to include contemporary characters and settings. The dolls and accompanying books are designed to be educational, inspiring, and entertaining, and they are often used in educational settings and for play. American Girl also offers a range of accessories and clothing for dolls, as well as special events, stores, and online experiences designed to enhance the overall American Girl experience.

Pleasant Company was established in 1986 by Pleasant Rowland in Middleton, Wisconsin. The company initially sold its products exclusively through mail orders and became known for its high-quality, educational, and inspiring products for young girls. In 1998, Mattel Inc., one of the world’s largest toy manufacturers, acquired Pleasant Company for $700 million. As a result, Pleasant Company became a subsidiary of Mattel and expanded its reach and distribution to include brick-and-mortar stores and online sales channels. This acquisition allowed Pleasant Company to bring its beloved products, including the American Girl dolls and accompanying books, to an even wider audience and solidified its position as a leading player in the toy and educational products industry.

The first American Girl dolls were in theĀ Historical Characters collection, which included dolls and books based on fictional girls from different eras in American history. Each of these dolls was sold with a book that provided a detailed backstory for the character and chronicled their experiences and adventures. These original dolls and books were well-received and established the American Girl brand as a leader in the doll and toy market.

The original lineup of American Girl Dolls included:

  • Kirsten Larson: A pioneer girl from Sweden who travels to America in the mid-1800s.
  • Samantha Parkington: An orphan growing up in the Edwardian era of the early 1900s.
  • Molly McIntire: A girl growing up in the United States during World War II.
  • Felicity Merriman: A colonial girl living in Virginia in the late 1700s.
  • Addy Walker: A former slave who escapes to freedom in the North during the Civil War.
  • Josefina Montoya: A girl living in New Mexico in the 1820s.