Back in the late 1920’s a little girl’s love for dolls began to take shape and at age five she taught herself how to make their clothes. The first Shirley Temple doll came out in 1934 but Ruth’s family didn’t have money to spend on store-bought toys. Her father died in 1929 leaving his wife and three children struggling to live on a very meager income out in the country. One day while playing with a neighbor, Ruth asked the child if she could hold her Shirley Temple doll. The child’s hurtful response became the catalyst for what would become a passion for doll collecting later in Ruth’s life. Ruth’s mother, emotionally fragile and caring for three young children alone, had suffered a nervous breakdown and the neighbor child didn’t want someone with a “crazy” mother playing with her doll.