The story of this ad was kindly furnished by Randy in Scottsdale, Az.
This ad appeared in LIFE Magazine on August 25, 1947.
If you are in need of a particular article, Randy has LIFE Magazines from 1936-1948
He can be reached at <Rsvdebes@aol.com>
This is a quote of the above story.
The daughter of B. O. Plenty and Gravel Gertie
becomes a doll and starts to set sales record.
In his comic strip Dick Tracy Chester Gould has created a
gallery of characters which includes such figures as Flattop, The Brow
and the Mole. Last year Gould married off two of his unseemly
personalities, B. O. Plenty, an unkempt, smelly old criminal and Gravel
Gertie, a banjo-playing dervish who lived in a gravel pit. Two months
ago this grotesque couple amazed Gould's public by producing a beautiful
child named Sparkly. Her dazzling eyes and hip-length blond hair
immediately won the hearts of Dick Tracy's 26 million readers.
Among them was an ex-all American football player named William
M. Mc Duffee, manager of the toy department of Gimbels, one of the
largest department stores in the U.S. McDuffee reasoned that because
of the popular comic strip a Baby Sparkle Plenty doll would need little
advertising or promotion. Mc Duffee took his idea to the Ideal Toy and
Novelty Co. Forty eight days later, the production of Baby Sparkle
Plenty dolls began. On July 28 they went on sale. At a stiff $ 5.98 apiece,
10,000 sold in the first five days. Sales in the next two weeks zoomed
to 22,000. At this rate more Baby Sparkle Plentys will be sold in the
last five months of this year than all other types of doll put together.
Mc Duffee, who knows a good thing when he has it, is getting ready
to bring out Baby Sparkle Plenty cradle and a Gravel Gertie banjo."
1st I think
Sparkle must have come in two different type boxes.
I am not sure which is the older of the two.
If anyone knows, please let me know. Thanks.
The Sunday Comics
May 30th, 1948. The Sunday comics. (by Chester Gould)
Sparkle Plenty's first birthday. She really was a
special little girl. She made the Sunday paper!!!
This information was kindly furnished by Angela in London, Ontario, Canada.
Angela has a copy of this ad. She sells the directions to this snow
suit. If you are interested- you may write to her at
Baby Sparkle Plenty Paper Dolls
Saalfield # 1510 1948
These Paper dolls are courtesy of Jo Addie of LaGrange, Il.
In the News Again
This full page article is from a 1953 Life magazine.
It gave the story of each doll.
Kindly furnished by Mike Dodson of Tenn.
Sparkle Plenty Soap Sculpture in her Bed
The box (bed) was 5 1/2" by 3 1/4". The doll lay in a bed of pink
cotton. The box said " Modeled in castile soap by Lightfoot, New York.
There was even a Sparkle Plenty Bank
Or perhaps a comic book??
THIS PAGE WAS MADE IN THE USA
updated January 28, 2001