Bertha Young is gone, but her dolls live on. Many area residents who enjoyed craft shows remember Bertha Young's dolls. For 25 years beginning in about 1970, they would admire them at Jiminy Peak, the Cummington Fair, the Church on the Hill in Lenox, and at numerous other New England craft shows or at her little shop in Hancock. Bertha's husband, Dick, was the faithful automobile packer and unpacker, the one who put up and took down the tables, chairs and canopy, and the assistant sales person.
Bertha loved babies, and she was a life-long lover of dolls. She made hundreds of Raggedy Anns and Andys, identified by a smiley face and her BIY initials. Their shirts and dresses were made of calico or gingham, and the top of Andy's white sailor hat was sometimes made to match. They were the best, with their embroidered eyes, instead of buttons. Red-haired Suelle and Will were made in honor of our children, Susan and Billy. She was an artist. At her funeral, Raggedy Ann and Andy sat on a small bench in a corner of the room.
Other favorites were Baby Elizabeth and Sam and Samantha. She also made beautiful outfits for a life-like vinyl doll which was made in Spain. Their outfits were trimmed with lace and ribbon rosettes. The baby girl wears a ribbon headband with a rosette.
She was also an expert knitter. As babies, our children wore hand-knit sweaters made by aunt Bert.
I treasure my Raggedy Ann and Andy, my Sam and Samantha, and my well-dressed babies.
Priscilla M. Northup