All of us have come into contact with a doll at some point in our lives, and while most of them are harmless, it’s when they take on a life of their own that one must watch their back.
Thankfully, most of us will never find notes from Annabelle declaring how much she misses us, or discover ourselves trapped in a scene from one of the Child’s Play films, but by many accounts, haunted dolls are real, and quite terrifying! After all, this isn’t Ted we’re talking about.
The earliest known reports of a haunted doll date back to ancient Egypt where the enemies of Ramses III attempted to use wax images of his likeness to bring about his death. The dolls used in this ritual were said to be living and would curse anyone who bore their resemblance.
In this feature, Wicked Horror will be taking a look at the top account of haunted dolls from around the world. As always, let us know your thoughts in the comments box below.
Robert the Doll
Robert–who is often referred to as Robert the Haunted Doll–is a one of a kind doll who was once owned by a Florida painter named Robert Eugene Otto–thus the name, Robert. According to the stories, Robert was given the doll as a child by a female servant (who just so happened to be well versed in the art of voodoo) that tended to his abusive parents’ house. Legends suggest that the servant possessed the three-foot-tall doll as a way to get back at the Otto family.
Robert is said to have the ability to speak and move around on his own. The boy’s parents would often hear him having conversations with the doll. Whenever strange things would happen in the house, or misfortunes would befall the family, Robert would always place the blame on the doll, stating “Robert did it!” adamant that the doll was doing these things.
When his mother and father died, Robert inherited the house and moved in with his wife, Annette. On becoming ill, instead of spending time with his wife he locked himself alone in the guest room with his doll by his side and when he died, he was still in the guest room with the doll beside him.
Robert the Haunted Doll now calls the Key West Martello Museum home. There, he is visited by tourists who are captivated by his frightening story. Even within the confines of the museum, behind a glass case, Robert still manages to terrify and bewilder. Several employees have reported that he has changed position overnight, and in one case even had dust on his feet in the morning, suggesting that he was walking around when no one was in the building. If you want to take a picture of him, you must ask politely and apparently he will tilt his head in permission. If he doesn’t and you take a picture anyways it is said that a curse will befall you and anyone who accompanied, you to the museum. Something that has seen to be true as the museum constantly receives apology letters for Robert from visitors who didn’t ask permission and bad luck has befallen them.
One of the creepiest parts of the truly scary film The Conjuring is the evil doll Annabelle, who makes up the cornerstone of Ed and Lorraine Warren’s spooky museum of trophies. In real life Annabelle was just your run of the mill Raggedy Ann doll.
A woman named Donna received Annabelle from her mother in 1970 after her mother bought the used doll at a hobby store. Donna was a college student at the time, and living with a roommate named Angie, and at first neither thought the doll was anything special. But over time they noticed Annabelle seemed to move on her own; at first it was really subtle, just changes in position, things that could be written off as the doll being jostled. But the movement increased, and within a few weeks it seemed to become fully mobile.
The escalations continued and one-night Donna returned home to find Annabelle in her bed, with blood on her hands. The blood–or some sort of red liquid–seemed to be coming from the doll itself. That was enough; Donna finally agreed to bring in a medium. The psychic sat with the doll and told the girls that long before their apartment complex had been built there had been a field on that property. A seven-year-old girl named Annabelle Higgins had been found dead in that field. Her spirit remained, and when the doll came into the house the girl’s spirit latched on to it. She found Donna and Angie to be trustworthy. She just wanted to stay with them. She wanted to be safe with them.
Being sweet, nurturing types – they were both nursing students–Donna and Angie agreed to let Annabelle stay with them. This is when things escalated. A friend of the girls was viciously clawed by Annabelle, though he could he never prove it. The ladies then turned to an Episcopalian priest, who in turned called in Ed and Lorraine Warren. Annabelle now resides in the Warren’s room of haunted objects.
Pupa the Doll
Pupa The Haunted Doll was given to her owner in the 1920’s and belonged only to her until she died in July 2005. The owner was about five or six years old when she received Pupa. At the time, she lived in Trieste, Italy but later traveled to the United States where she eventually stayed.
The dolls hair was crafted from locks of its owner’s real hair and Pupa’s owner often claimed that the doll would speak to her. She would go on to tell her grandchildren that the doll was her best friend.
When Pupa’s owner died in early 2005, the family put Pupa in a glass display case with other items. However, Pupa doesn’t like being locked in the case and she periodically changes positions. Often she is said to push things around in the display case, with the family reporting hearing a sound like someone tapping on the glass as they pass. When they turn to look, they have seen Pupa’s hand pressed against the glass or her legs crossed when they were not before.
One member of the family reportedly managed to catch the doll rising to its feet and walking within the case on video. However, on the three occasions he tried to upload the video onto Youtube, the video was obscured with a mysterious thick white film and the words “Pupa No!” scribbled on the film in childish handwriting.
Amanda’s beautiful but haunting face was originally designed by Heinrich Handwerck. But since 1885 the bisque heads used on their creations have been made by the famous Simon & Halbig Company of Grafenhain, Germany, which was founded in 1869. Many of the heads found on Heinrich Handwerck dolls actually bear the “Simon Halbig” name impressed into the porcelain, but this particular example does not.
Amanda’s recent life can originally be traced back to Ebay but no further than that. Since she was sold three years ago she has been bought sold traded and given away more times than can be counted on two hands. The ghost that is said to possess her is very active if she does not like you. If she is happy then she just sits there staring into space. But when she is ready to move on she begins to wreak havoc in the home she resides in until she is once again sent on her way.
Mandy the Doll
Mandy is a porcelain baby doll who was owned for many years by a woman who claimed that she would hear the doll crying in the middle of the night from the basement she was kept in. Once the owner worked up the courage to investigate, she would only ever find an open window. The strange sounds were enough to scare her for good, and Mandy was donated to the Quesnel Museum in British Columbia in 1991. According to the previous owner, once the doll was no longer in her house the mysterious crying stopped altogether.
Since her permanent placement, there have been stories from staff about encounters with the haunted doll. Lunches would mysteriously disappear from the refrigerator and be found tucked away in a drawer. Objects such as pens, books and pictures would go missing. Footsteps were heard when no-one was around. When she was placed in a room by herself, the staff found papers thrown all around the room as if she had thrown a tantrum.
Mandy is also known to “play” around with electrical equipment, causing it to malfunction. Visitors have claimed to feel uneasy or sad around her. Some say her eyes have a tendency to blink or follow people around the room. Her fingers and head move on their own as well. One visitor was videotaping Mandy only to have the camera light go on and off every 5 seconds. When the visitor’s camera was turned on another exhibit, it functioned just fine. Mandy the Doll draws loads of curious visitors to the museum every year.
Anna is the current owner of a baby doll named Joliet. Her family has passed down Joliet for four generations. All the women in Anna’s family have been cursed to keep up a cruel tradition. Each daughter gives birth to two children, a boy and a girl. In each case, the son mysteriously dies on its third day of life.
Anna has been told Joliet was given to her then-pregnant great-grandmother by a vengeful friend. Soon after, her great-grandmother gave birth to a boy, only to have it die on day three.
Giggles and inhuman screams are heard in the night, coming from the doll. The family claims the cries of different infants can be heard, making the doll appear to be the vessel for all the baby boys lost over the years. The family expects this number to grow as the doll is passed from mother to daughter.The doll comes with a terrible curse, yet the family does not dare part with it.
The Pulau Ubin Barbie
Barbie is perhaps the most popular doll in the world. So popular, in fact, that a dead girl requested her from beyond the grave.
At the beginning of World War I, the British mistrusted many foreigners in their colonies, and the British army investigated one German couple in Singapore in 1914 as possible spies. The couple was caught, but their young daughter escaped, only to fall off a cliff and die. A shrine was erected in her memory by a local man in Pulau Ubin.
At the shrine known as Lady Na Tuk Kong Shrine, you will find a Barbie doll occupying the place on the altar usually reserved for the statue of a deity. She is surrounded by tubes of lipstick, bottles of nail polish, perfumed water, and other cosmetics people have offered.
According to Shin Min Daily News, the man who built the shrine dreamed of a Caucasian girl leading him to a shop and instructing him to buy a Barbie doll there. The girl in his dream also told him to place the doll on the altar in the shrine.
Although he did not fully believe that what he dreamed of was real, he managed to find the same store in reality. In the store, he found a Barbie doll which looked exactly like the one he had seen in his dream. As a result, he bought the doll and brought it back to the shrine.
The worshippers go to the temple to pray to a Barbie doll, which is adorned in bracelets, a garland and a necklace. They believe it has supernatural powers to grant fortunes and heal.