Editor’s Note: This story was reported before city and county authorities closed the Sammy Brown Library as part of a larger effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Departures of American Girl dolls will resume when the library reopens.
The Sammy Brown Library doesn’t just buy books. The library now offers American Girl dolls on loan to children in the community.
“One of the things libraries do is provide access to groups of people, different diverse groups that wouldn’t necessarily have access to this stuff,” said library director Kim Turner. “These dolls in the stores are very expensive, and very few little girls have one, and so one of the things we want to do with that is provide access to the opportunity to have the doll, to play with it. the doll, read the book, interact with the story and the doll together.
The library currently has two American Girl dolls available for a week-long release, both of which are the Tenney Grant doll. Tenney Grant is a contemporary character, a disrupted songwriter who finds the heart to be herself, according to American Girl.
“One of the reasons we chose to add her is that her character in the books that accompany the doll is that of a rising country music star,” Turner said. “So we thought it went hand in hand with the Carthage region and the Country Music Hall of Fame.”
Before checking out a doll, the library will review the doll care instructions and include a copy of those instructions to take home. The dolls come in a transparent backpack with accessories, clothes and the first book that comes with the doll.
“So you read the story with her,” Turner said. “We try to match the books with the doll to encourage the kids to get excited about reading… we have all the books in the set that go with this doll. So you can consult any of the books to read while you have the doll checked out. But we also hope it will inspire them to check out some of the other American Girl books we have; (we) have a lot of series with these particular dolls.
Turner heard about the opportunity to get the dolls through another library manager.
“There is a company called Good 360 that works with nonprofits to provide items, usually discontinued items at significantly reduced prices, and there are a few caveats that accompany the purchase of things from them, ”Turner said. “I have to be a non-profit agency to buy it, and then I can’t turn around and sell it. Anything I acquire through Good 360, even if I paid for it, I have to give it away, or in this case we pass it around. It costs nothing because people who have a library card, it costs nothing for everything they consult.
Turner said the American Girl Company is known for its high-quality dolls and that they have been very popular with young girls since their inception.
“American Girl dolls were originally story-based – as every doll had a section of the story or a period they were aligned with – but the American Girl doll program has changed a bit for girls now. are more modern and more adventurous seekers, “said Turner.” This one’s a country music star; you could be a soccer star; we love dancing; we love horses, things like that. They have so sort of updated their image, and so that’s one of the reasons we wanted to add that. ”
Turner expects a reserve list to be added for the dolls. Once the library reopens, customers can reserve a doll for their child to pick up by visiting the library at 319 S. Market S. in Carthage or calling (903) 693-6741.