Friday, April 21, 2017


Wish You Were Here, from Rose O'Neill

Not too often you're going to find a postcard featuring a photo of a cartoonist, but here's one featuring Rose O'Neill amid a selection of her Kewpie dolls.

This is actually a later card, dating from the 1950s or 60s would be my guess, and was printed for sale at the Shepherd of the Hills Farm in Branson Missouri. "Huh", you say? Well, it seems that Rose O'Neill kept a home in southern Missouri, lived her later life there, and the locals have sort of adopted her as their own.

An early attraction of Branson, now famed for it's country music theatres and buses of Q-Tip tourists, was a farm that was used as the locale of The Shepherd of the Hills, a popular 1907 novel by Harold Bell Wright. The farm was made into a tourist attraction, and over the years has included an outdoor amphitheater, a viewing tower, farm tours, museums of Ozark life, and of course every kind of merchandise that credit cards can buy.

In the 1940s, the owners of the Farm, who were friends of O'Neill,  put together an extensive collection of her Kewpie dolls and associated ephemera for display in the farm's Memorial Museum. I don't know how long the collection was housed there, but the latest description of the attraction I can find make no mention of it, so I presume it is no more.


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