Pioneering Black doll Baby Nancy enters Toy Hall of Fame

by Associated Press

The National Toy Hall of Fame has inducted its Class of 2020. The three honorees revealed Thursday are Baby Nancy, sidewalk chalk and the wooden block game Jenga. (Photo Credit: National Toy Hall of Fame)

ROCHESTER, NY (AP) – The National Toy Hall of Fame has inducted its Class of 2020. The three honorees revealed Thursday are Baby Nancy, sidewalk chalk and the wooden block game Jenga.

All were recognized for their creativity and popularity over time.

Baby Nancy was introduced in 1968 and was the first Black baby doll to have an Afro and other authentic features. Hall of fame officials say her popularity exposed a long-standing demand for Black dolls considered ethnically correct.

The doll was produced by Shindana Toys, a community-owned company launched by Operation Bootstrap. Shindana Toys makes toys that “reflect Black pride, Black talent, and most of all, Black enterprise,” according to the National Toy Hall of Fame

The popularity of Baby Nancy exposed a demand for ethnically correct Black dolls that the mainstream market had not previously delivered, the National Toy Hall of Fame said.

The Class of 2020 was chosen by experts from among 12 finalists. The hall of fame is located in The Strong museum in Rochester, New York.

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