Just a Shabby Doll (1913) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • The little girl tripped into the library one evening "to kiss papa good night." She found him with a doll in his hands, a shabby disreputable toy, which had never been of any great intrinsic value. It puzzled the little girl and she asked questions. The father was in a reminiscent mood that evening, so he took his little daughter on his knee, and told her the wonderful history of the shabby doll. It seems that years before a friendless little newsboy met a little girl who was beautiful and kind and rich. The boy was able to do some favors for the little girl, and she was so kindly in her appreciation of them that the boy decided nothing was too good for her. Therefore at Christmastime he wasted an extraordinary amount of money, he thinks now it was twenty cents, in the purchase of a doll, which seemed to him to be a thing of beauty. Well, the years passed, and the ragged newsboy grew up to be a fine, manly youth, while the little girl developed into a beautiful woman. They loved each other, but the girl's father pointed out that the young man did not have sufficient funds to support the girl in the station of life to which she was accustomed. The young man went west to make a fortune, and at first had many trials and suffered long from illness. When he made the fortune and came east with it the girl he loved had disappeared. He learned that her father had lost all his money, and that the girl had wandered out into the world to earn her own living, but he did not know where she was. Then one day while a guest at a house party, a child displayed the doll she had taken from the trunk of her governess, and the governess came in to reclaim it, and the boy recognized the girl he had sought and everyone rejoiced and the marriage bells rang soon afterwards. The little girl who heard the story rejoiced when she found that her parents were the principals in it, and vowed she would cherish "the shabby doll" as long as she lived.


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