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"World peace through children" was the theme of the Friendship Dolls exchanged by Japan and America in 1927. These dolls allowed children to better understand and appreciate the children of another country.
In 1927, relations between Japan and the United States were not good, and many Americans had bad feelings toward Japanese people who had come to the U.S. to live. The Friendship Dolls allowed children to experience the fact that the world is a neighborhood of nations.
Today, as much as any time in history, children need to understand the importance of friendship and peace between nations. Friendship Dolls continue to play an important role in encouraging good relations between Japanese and American children. New dolls continue to be exchanged, and many children take part in activities involving the original Friendship Dolls.
This Children's Page gives a brief overview of the story of the Friendship Dolls, including the 1927 doll exchange, the American dolls, and the Japanese dolls. The Children's Page is part of a much larger web site about the Friendship Dolls, so please feel free to visit the Main Page. Each one of the American and Japanese Friendship Dolls has its own story to tell.
If you have any comments or questions about the Friendship Dolls, please send Bill Gordon an e-mail at email@example.com. Thanks for visiting!
Photo at top left courtesy of Otsu
City Museum of History and Hirano Elementary School (Shiga Prefecture)
Photo at top right courtesy of Yokohama Doll Museum and University of Oregon Museum of Art