1964 Mattel Tatters Orphan talking doll

21 Jun

1964 Mattel Tatters talking 18" plush doll

This doll was made by Mattel in 1964. This doll was marketed as the “Orphan doll” and was named Tatters. As you can see, Tatters wears a skirt and red coat with patches on them. Her little red coat has fraying at the wrists-this was intentionally made this way at the factory. This doll is missing her original black safety pin that held together the front of her coat.

Most Tatters dolls are missing this black safety pin


Tatters original box

These dolls do not require batteries. Instead they have a pull string. When the doll’s string is pulled, vibrations drop the orange record player arm (with a tiny needle) onto the spinning white disk. The miniature LP then plays pre-recorded tracks.

Mattel voice box

The phonographs hold up well over time,  but O-rings, coils and springs that secure them and control disk speed melt or snap over time. Once they do, these dolls become very garbled.To restore a pull-string doll’s voice, doll doctors pry open the voicebox, removes and cleans the working parts, and replaces worn elements with ones salvaged from other dolls.

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