German had found a very simple way to close the eyes of dolls by means of a counterweight ( small lead ball) placed in the head and connecting both eyes so that the doll slept when we slept it. It was automatic. It concerned the puffed glass eyes. For the crystal eyes molded, it was not possible, that is why the French manufacturers of eyes studied the problem by 1880 because for the greater part the eyes were in molded enamel.
Steiner was the first one to be interested with order manual worker of eyes by the globe, the child became an actor of his doll which closed eyes with order.

For that purpose, a big handicap, since the creation of the unbreakable said articulated baby:
we could not make the system of command pass in the body by the articulated neck. The order had to be made by the head, thus by the stalk going out level with the wig or by a hole practised in the china at the level of the neck.

Steiner chose to activate eyes by a stalk going out on the side, level with the wig, but he not less applied for a patent followed by 3 additions to solve the problem in 1880 and 1881.

As for the Company Schmitt and son, the patent put deposited in 1885, shows a single stalk going out at the back of the head to activate more or less the closure of eyes.
 Émile Jumeau had tried to solve the problem by applying for a first patent n°166.885 ) on February 7th, 1885. Eyelids closed by means of a metallic stalk articulated taking out on the nape of the neck and what we could manipulate manually.

In the case which interests us, it is about a doll Jumeau presented on E-Bay, equipped with the proprietary system by Émile Jumeau on July 1st, 1886 ( n°177.127 ) for " improvements in the mechanism intended to mobilize eyes in the heads of dolls and others. " It is apparently the first time when eyes rose on a deck to pins, and when they are going to be able to fall over on small cushions, without having the direct contact with the walls of the head. " .

Eyes are crystal molded, hemispherical, without any space around eyelids, with a stamped frame. They are moved by metallic stalks and tierod. The friction of eyes is made on a skin stuck inside the head around eyelids.
The stalk which activates the mechanism goes out at the level of the nape of the neck, it is provided with a small mechanical handle that we turn right or to the left according to the wished amplitude.

To see the photos of the doll we can date it 1890s. It is extremely rare to find a doll with the application of this patent.
He did not have the success expected in spite of the note of the patent : " the realisation of the various constituent parts of this sophisticated mechanism, assures this one a very big solidity, and allows to deliver it to an exceptional price of cheap ".

Elements of the patent of 1886

I am going to indicate how is activated the frame of eyes.
This frame, or crossbar A is cut with an appendix C in two branches, which, in the swindle, is folded up (Fig 2) to embrace a pin, on which is hitched a metallic tierod D, cut then twisted, in a way that its extremities are in perpendicular plans. The lower eye of this tierod receives the extremity of a stalk-crank in metal T, committed to a little bit hard friction, and guided, in a tube " t " fixed to the mask by a  nut has fascinating support a small wooden block " e ". The tube is thread to you for that purpose, and contains a base b. The stalk T goes out behind the neck and is provided with a small metallic handle "  m that it is enough to turn right or to the left to produce the wis" hed effect, that is open or close eyes (see the plan punctuated with the fig 2). The amplitude of the movement is limited by the continuation c " of the tube, over which comes to rest against the angled part  of the stalk-crank. The friction of eyes is made on a skin stuck inside the head, around eyelids.

Anne-Marie POROT

P.S.  Let us remind that Madam POROT has already published an article on the " Poupée Mystère (Doll mystery) " of the  .Fabrique Française des Yeux Expression diriged by C. Le Bos d' Éspinoy, who in 1926 had proposed a 29 cm doll, head mould 60 8/0, whose eyes were mobilized by the set of a command at waist level in the back.

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                 May 2014