170 year old doll

Meet Barbara. This pumpkin head doll is thought to be around 170 years old. Her body is stuffed with straw and her arms, legs and feet are made of wood. Pumpkin head dolls were much cheaper to produce than the solid wax English dolls which were so popular in Australia during early colonial times. But that didn’t matter to the great-grandmother of Moora’s Bullock family who received the doll as a child. At the time she could press the doll’s straw body to activate a squeaker box inside, causing the doll to cry out ‘mama’. As the girl grew older, the doll was largely forgotten and lay in a tin trunk in a backyard garden shed where she survived searing heat, damp and cold. In 1974 Barbara Bullock, the great granddaughter of the original owner, rescued the doll and gifted her to doll collector Jo Pearson, who named her Barbara. Pearson later donated Barbara to the Moora and Districts Historical Society to return her to her Moora home where she is once again loved and admired.

Available at:

Moora Historical Society

From military to medical - Moora’s post-colonial history captured in a series of varied displays

The enthusiastic team of volunteers at Moora Districts Historical Society has built a vast repository of information and artefacts about the region’s local history at Moora Museum. One whole building...


Clinch St
Moora WA 6510

Open Hours
25 April to Nov on Sun 9am - 2pm; also open for groups by request

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