Have you ever encountered an object from your childhood that you haven’t seen in years, and all of a sudden, a flood of memories returned that you had long forgotten?
This happened to our mother recently when she spotted a delicate figurine, originally belonging to her grandmother, on a relative’s bookshelf.
Her family member was given the item after the grandmother they shared passed away.
The Piano Baby
Researching it further, I learned that the miniature doll was known as a Piano Baby.
This little porcelain piece was one of the most endearing relics of the Victorian era.
Those fortunate to have a piano, placed a light shawl with a silk lining on top to keep the piano dust-free.
The shawl often slipped off and many found it handy to use figurines or heavy vases to keep it in place.
This collectible was probably imported to the islands through the Maison Danoise store which opened in St. Thomas in 1935.
The most valuable piano babies were made by Heubach, a German company.
Today, their value is between $200.00 to $600.00, depending on the size and markings.
To my mother, the value was unimportant. Seeing and holding the miniature doll once again, was a feeling of pure joy.