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I hate dolls. Very much so. Their uncanny little blank glass eyes staring at me from across the room at night made me turn around any and all dolls I owned to face the wall. But I’m not just going to allow myself to suffer with this fear. No! I’m going to make sure you suffer with me! Here are some of the creepiest dolls in history, so I won’t suffer alone now!

Related: Top 10 Creepiest Doll and Statue Havens

10 The Eight-Legged Walking Doll

Imagine yourself exploring an old house’s attic. Maybe you’re just cleaning it, or you just moved in and are looking around. As you pull back a dusty old curtain, you stumble across this mechanical abomination; it’s 8 feet frozen in a circle as a withered wooden doll’s head—or what’s left of it, I suppose—smiles up at you with blank eyes. Creepy, right?

Well, this doll is a rare 19th-century walking doll that was created in the Victorian era. This unique doll had eight legs that moved like a wheel. The doll was designed to look like a human woman, with a head, torso, and eight jointed legs that allowed it to walk in a lifelike manner. The wooden doll would be pushed around like a car to simulate the look and sound of walking with a long cloth dress to cover its extra legs.

It’s not clear how many of these dolls were made or how many still exist today, but it’s clear that they are extremely rare and valuable. In fact, one of these dolls was sold at auction in 2012 for over $7,500.

I think it would have been better if the legs were like a spider’s, but I guess the wheel makes sense.[1]

9 Swimming Victorian Doll

If you thought walking dolls were your main worry, don’t worry! They have swimming dolls too! Better swim faster!

These Ondine dolls are second on the list because of just how creepy they look. They were popular in the late 1800s and early 1900s and were created so that kids could have a cheerful swimming buddy with them at all times. Watching them.

The dolls were made of waterproof materials such as rubber or celluloid with mechanisms that allowed them to move their arms and legs in a swimming motion when placed in water. However, their elbows and knees were bent backward to enable them to swim more efficiently, so you are never too sure about which way they’ll start swimming toward you.

But wait, it gets better. The dolls were sometimes made to look like the children they were bought for, basically giving a tiny little deranged model of what the child would look like if their limbs were twisted backward as they swam, the pieces clicking and whirring as they follow the real child with their blank eyes.

Nothing like taking your fake plastic backward-limbed child to the pool for a day in the sun, am I right?[2]

8 Cabbage Patch Snacktime Kid

Cabbage Patch dolls were still a little popular in the early 2000s when I was born, making me a little sadder for humanity. So here they are on this list. Okay, regardless of why I think all of them should be burned in a field, one in particular is really bad.

This specific Cabbage Patch Snacktime Kid doll was a spin-off of the original doll and was released in the 1990s. This version allowed children to “feed” the doll with a spoon and watch as the food disappeared into the doll’s mouth. The doll was made to be more lifelike for kids to pretend-play being parents, as is pretty normal at some point in a child’s life.

However, this doll was recalled from stores due to safety concerns. There were reports of the Cabbage Patch Snacktime doll swallowing children’s hair and fingers, which led to its recall from stores. Creepily, the doll decided that the meal wasn’t enough and wanted a piece of the chef.

The doll had a motorized mechanism in its mouth that allowed it to “chew” on the spoon and other objects placed in its mouth. However, some children would put their fingers or hair into the doll’s mouth, which could become caught in the mechanism and cause bleeding, ripped-out hair, or, worse, loud crying.

There were 35 reports of children getting their hair or fingers caught in the doll’s mouth and unable to free themselves, which led to the product’s recall. The recall was issued in 1996, and the dolls were removed from stores, and production was halted.

Gives a new meaning to “finger food,” at least.[3]

7 Aging Doll

The “Doll That Aged” or the “Doll That Grew Old” started as a typical baby girl doll that a couple’s younger daughter played with almost every day. However, as with most toys, the doll was gradually played with less and less as the girl grew older. Eventually, the doll was basically abandoned, and the parents put it in the attic, where it was left for over 11 years. Unfortunately for them, the next time they went up to the attic, the doll looked a little… different. A little… older.

When the parents went into the attic looking for the doll, they were surprised to find this old, wrinkled doll left upstairs. They definitely didn’t remember ever buying one of these, but after studying the doll, their curiosity shifted to horror as they began to recognize its shriveled-up features.

The old and wrinkled doll with a piercing gaze had, in fact, been the doll their daughter had once played with. The parents, terrified, gave the doll away immediately with no questions asked (actual horror movie logic for once). The next owner sold the doll for a lot of money, and it has become a paranormal sensation today.[4]

6 Mourning Dolls

These particular dolls may be the saddest part of the Victorian era as an aftermath of the various diseases that ran rampant during that time. There are many records showing how these “dolls” were made, including the many pictures of them. Some groups of people have continued to make them today. These are known as the Victorian Mourning Dolls.

These funeral dolls were popular and were typically made of materials such as wax or porcelain. They were dressed in black clothing to symbolize death. During this time, infant and child mortality rates were much higher than they are today, and the death of a child was a tragically common occurrence. Many parents found comfort in creating or commissioning mourning dolls to remember and honor their child.

These dolls were often highly detailed and were made to resemble the child that had passed away, with features such as hair and eye color carefully replicated. They were often displayed in the family home where the deceased child used to play and treated as though they were still breathing to keep the memory of the real child alive. The dolls were also usually placed next to the deceased child in their grave during the burial. Still, some families would keep them forever in grieving.

Due to the unsettling nature of dolls being almost a replacement for the passed child, it has made it onto this list. However, while creepy today, it is still a very sad way of grieving.[5]

5 La Pascualita

La Pascualita is a mannequin that is believed by many to be a real human corpse. The mannequin is currently on display in a bridal shop in Chihuahua, Mexico. It has become a popular tourist attraction due to its alleged haunted and mysterious past.

According to local legend, La Pascualita was modeled after the daughter of the original owner of the bridal shop. The daughter died tragically on her wedding day from a poisonous insect, and her mother was said to have commissioned the mannequin in her likeness as a way to honor her memory.

Over the years, rumors have circulated that La Pascualita is not a mannequin at all but rather the preserved body of the owner’s daughter, though the mother denies it. Some people claim to have seen the mannequin move on its own or to have heard it whisper, leading to speculation that it’s haunted by the trapped spirit of the daughter.

While inspected and disclaimed by several mortuary professionals, the eerie presence and uncanny-looking features make it hard to deny the unsettling aura surrounding it. Many believe her ghost is preserving the mannequin from decaying and that it will never rot away. Others believe that it’s all just a marketing ploy. Which side are you on?[6]

4 Death Portraiture

Similarly to the mourning dolls, death portraiture was a way for Victorian parents to keep their deceased children alive longer.

Death portraiture, or post-mortem photography, was common in the 19th and early 20th centuries. It involved taking photographs of deceased individuals, often posed to look as though they were still alive, and, in essence, turning them into dolls to create just one more memory and provide one last photo for their family.

The deceased person was often posed in a way that mimicked a living person, with eyes open and sometimes propped up with supports. The photographs were sometimes taken at home, with the child posed on a bed, in a chair, or in a studio setting with a painted backdrop. You can easily distinguish the dead from the living in these photos, as the bodies do not move, so they appear more sharply against their blurred siblings. Even more so when visible parts of them had rotted away already. Some even still held an expression of pain or even disfigurement.

Today, post-mortem photography is also still practiced in some cultures, although it is less common than it once was.[7]

3 Mr. Ted

Bolsover Castle, located in Derbyshire, England, is known to be one of the most haunted castles in the world. This can largely be attributed to the fact that it was built on top of an ancient burial ground in a land known as the “Satanic Capital of Britain.” However, within these walls lies a teddy bear in a glass box covered in chains since 2017. The bear’s name was Mr. Ted, not to be confused with the movie bear “TED,” however. This teddy bear was not quite as funny.

Mr. Ted was to become a new haunted addition to the castle brought from psychic medium Debbie Davis’s home. It was reported that the bear caused illness such as nausea and headaches. However, before the doll was made a permanent attraction, paranormal expert Jo Lockwood from The Morning and three volunteers decided to evaluate the doll by having a sleepover!

The volunteers placed the doll on a chair and began asking questions. Unfortunately, Mr. Ted did not maintain his voice level, and, through radio frequencies, he continuously growled and screamed “Leave!” at the visitors when asked questions, probably about his love life. The scream could be heard down the hallway, where Lockwood monitored the situation on a CCTV camera. At 3 a.m., one of the CCTV cameras lost power. During this time, the doll began to sound more aggressive on the radio, as reported by the volunteers.

The group began to suffer from nausea and headaches, as forewarned, and this eventually led to one of the producers of The Morning being rushed to the hospital due to a sudden mysterious illness not described.

The group was so terrified of this doll that they immediately drove the doll to an undisclosed location 30 miles (48.5 kilometers) away and buried it deep in the ground. Lockwood deemed the bear full of pent-up rage and should never be found lest he would wreak havoc on all those around him. So, it seems that even teddy bears will murder you if given the chance.[8]

2 The Old Man Puppet

Paranormal investigator Jayne Harris’s Old Man Puppet is kept locked in her basement and blessed by holy water. The doll was inherited in the 1960s by a previous owner from his father, so it is unknown how old it is now. It has reportedly moved around on its own and physically attacked its owners.

After inheriting the doll, the previous owner tells haunting stories revolving around its stay at his house, including feeling dizzy and having migraines. He would also frequently have nightmares where an old man was sitting at the foot of his bed or holding him down. However, these were all minor incidents compared to the final incident before causing him to call Jayne to take the doll away.

One night, the owner was simply sleeping in his own bed when he woke up suddenly and saw a shadow move out of the corner of his eye. He then felt something tightly squeezing around his throat. He desperately tried waking his wife, who lay beside him, but obviously, she was the type to sleep through a fire alarm and didn’t stir.

The owner locked eyes with the doll sitting at the opposite side of the room and its smiling face seemed to be grinning down at him. He knew immediately that it must have been the doll and got rid of it promptly the next day by calling Jayne to collect it.

Jayne went on to contain the puppet in her basement and recorded it every night for three months. Eventually, on the last night, she recorded the doll seemingly sitting upright and then crashing into the glass panel in front of it—the only glass panel that wasn’t secured. The previous owner was not shocked to hear that the doll had moved, just relieved he wasn’t crazy.[9]

1 Robert

Robert the Doll is a haunted doll that has gained notoriety due to its creepy appearance and the numerous paranormal experiences associated with it. The doll is said to have been created by a German toy maker in the early 20th century and was originally owned by a boy named Robert Eugene Otto, who lived in Key West, Florida.

According to legend, Robert the Doll was given to young Robert by a servant who practiced voodoo and was angry at the family. The boy became deeply attached to the doll and would often talk to it and treat it like a real person. However, strange things began happening around the house after Robert received the doll.

As Robert grew older, he claimed that the doll was alive and had the power to move on its own. He even claimed that the doll would speak to him and that it was responsible for the strange occurrences in the house. Robert even claimed that the doll would sit upright at the edge of his bed while he slept and then scream and cry for his mother, only for her to show up and find all the furniture in his room thrashed and overturned.

After Robert’s death, the doll was passed down to various owners and was eventually donated to the Fort East Martello Museum in Key West. However, visitors to the museum have reported strange occurrences, including feeling as though the doll is watching them, hearing footsteps and giggling, and seeing the doll move on its own.

According to the legend, if someone disrespects or mocks the doll, they will be cursed with bad luck or other misfortunes. Many people who have visited the doll or heard about it from others send apologies out of fear that they may have unintentionally disrespected it or caused it to become angry. Visitors to the Fort East Martello Museum, where Robert is displayed, are advised to ask for his permission before taking a photograph and to be respectful while in his presence.

The museum reports receiving thousands of letters and emails from people all over the world apologizing to the doll for any perceived disrespect and asking for forgiveness. Even some have traveled all the way across the country to apologize in person after making fun of the doll. The doll is actually the inspiration for Chucky in Child’s Play as well.

There is no way I’m making a joke about Robert, thank you.[10]

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