One of the well known doll manufacturers in the US was the Arranbee Doll Company (a.k.a R & B). The company brought several high quality dolls mad of composition, vinyl, rubber, hard plastic, and bisque. It was founded by William Rothstein in 1919 in New York City. In the initial years of the company, they imported bisque doll parts especially the doll heads from German companies such as Simon & Halbig and Armand Marseille. They offered all-bisque and composition dolls which included shoes, wigs, doll body parts, and hospital dolls.
Soon after around 1925, Arranbee started producing their own dolls and even became a supplier for Vogue Doll Company around 1927. They opened their own factory which was mostly producing composition dolls in New York. Vogue’s 11-inch Dora doll and 14 or 17-inch Sportswoman doll series were a couple of dolls supplied by Arranbee and repackaged by Vogue. Arranbee also started producing hard plastic dolls in the 1940s and also kept up with the popularity of vinyl dolls in the 1950s.
The Arranbee dolls still known for their high quality materials and clothing. Yet a big change came to the company when its founder, William Rothstein, died in 1957. Rothstein’s family continued the operations but only for a brief period. They then sold the company to Vogue Doll Co. which continued its name until 1961. Most of the Arranbee dolls are properly marked and can be identified, thus making it easier for collectors to identify vintage Arranbee creations.
Some of its doll collections which include the year these were first manufactured are:
1) My Dream Baby (1924)
2) Bottle Tot (1926)
3) Nancy (1931)
4) Debu’teen (1938)
5) Around the World and Storybook dolls (1930s)
6) George and Martha Washington (1932)
7) Little Angel Baby (1940s)
8) Nanette (1947)
9) Princess Elizabeth and Baby Charles (1948)
10) Angel Face (1951)
11) Sweet Pea (1955)
12) Miss Coty Girl (1957)
13) April Showers and Lil Cupcake (1957)
14) Wee Lil’ Imp (1960)
These are just a few of the most popular dolls that Arranbee manufactured and launched from 1919 to 1961. Collectors who want to check the authenticity of the dolls should look among these markings on the doll’s body : 16, 23ARV, ARRANBEE, Simon & Halbig/Arranbee, AM 341 or 341 K, AM 351 or 351 K, Circle P, 49 R & B, 65 R & B, 210/Pat/Pen, 250 R & B, Made in U.S.A./Pat’s Pend, and Nancy. However, there are dolls that were produced which do not have any markings at all. Vintage collectors may just have to refer to the list of famous Arranbee dolls and scrutinize its authenticity based on the description of the dolls.