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Old 05-09-2016, 02:11 PM
Location: New Albany, Indiana (Greater Louisville)
10,401 posts, read 21,927,115 times
Reputation: 10104


I found this interesting video that talks about how the original idea for the Cabbage Patch Dolls, so popular in the 1980s, came from a Mayfield native who moved to Louisville. Someone stole her idea and made many millions off it.

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Old 05-10-2016, 02:19 PM
11,004 posts, read 9,214,804 times
Reputation: 20231
Thanks for help spreading the word. Martha Nelson Thomas was a lovely lady, and she certainly didn't deserve to suffer intellectual theft of this kind. Googling her name will lead to several sites which tell her story.

It is shameful that the well-known individual who stole her idea and consequently made millions is still lying about the origin of what he claims are "his" dolls. But some have no shame, clearly...I wish more people knew the real story behind those popular dolls.

I can remember Martha's cloth needle-sculpted "Doll Babies" being sold at the old Guild Gallery shop, which sold Kentucky-made crafts, on Euclid Avenue in the Chevy Chase shopping center back in the 1970s - the gallery would host teaparties for the dolls and their "adoptive parents". The original "Doll Babies" were often life-sized and wore actual children's vintage clothing and baby shoes, although Martha also made tiny dolls. The Guild Gallery displayed the Doll Babies in playpens and high chairs, posed as real babies. All had double-barreled names, usually a little odd sounding: Petey Victor. Ambrosia Diane. Marianna Mathilda. Earl Chester. And so on. And the new owners never "bought" their Doll Babies; they adopted them, complete with adoption certificates. Sound familiar?? But these were the originals.

All original Martha Nelson Thomas Doll Babies are very collectible today among doll and toy collectors, and all reflect the loving hands and skill of the true artist who made them.
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Old 05-26-2016, 11:14 AM
11,004 posts, read 9,214,804 times
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Bumping this - more people would be enlighted by watching the video and learning the truth.

Good thread - wish it had a jazzier title, maybe "The Real Truth about Xavier Roberts and the so-called "Cabbage Patch Kids"".
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Old 05-26-2016, 11:03 PM
Location: Near L.A.
4,114 posts, read 9,571,570 times
Reputation: 3379
Terrible display of intellectual theft indeed, and it was a sad video to watch. I'm glad she sued Xavier Roberts back in the '80s.

That being said--and I mean this in no way to be insensitive--Martha Nelson Thomas should have had copyrighting, and even patenting, done on her work ASAP. If I had to guess, she realized this after it was too late. This is a lesson for entrepreneurs, etc. (though Thomas was more artist than entrepreneur) to at least have copyrighting and patenting processes underway as soon as they are ready to unveil a product of their own creation.

Last edited by EclecticEars; 05-26-2016 at 11:13 PM..
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