THIS DAY IN THE YESTERYEAR: THE BARBIE DOLL DEBUTS (1959)

The Barbie Doll Debuts (1959)

When Ruth Handler realized that there were no adult-bodied dolls on the toy market, she suggested to her husband—with whom she co-founded the Mattel toy company—that Mattel begin producing one. In 1959, Barbie made her debut. She was based on a German doll called Bild Lilli and was marketed as a “Teen-age Fashion Model.” According to estimates, more than a billion Barbie dolls have been sold worldwide, and many have become collector’s items. Who is the “Barbie” after whom the doll was named? More… Discuss

 

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