contact us

Contact us today to learn more about R. John Wright.

2402 W Rd
Bennington, VT, 05201
United States

802-447-7072

A behind-the-scenes look at the R. John Wright Dolls Design Studio in Bennington, Vermont. Written by R. John Wright, hear in his own words how the creative design process unfolds and how the world-renowned RJW dolls and animal characters are readied for production. 

The R. John Wright Merry Wanderer by Ellen Tsagaris

News & Updates

A behind-the-scenes look at the R. John Wright Dolls Design Studio in Bennington, Vermont. Written by R. John Wright, hear in his own words how the creative design process unfolds and how the world-renowned RJW dolls and animal characters are readied for production. 

The R. John Wright Merry Wanderer by Ellen Tsagaris

John Wright

Ellen Tsagaris is the resident RJW Design Journal guest blogger. She has collected dolls since she was three years old. She has made dolls, priced dolls, repaired, dressed, and studied dolls and her blogging work can be found on the doll collecting section of about.com and on her personal doll blogs, Doll Museum, and Dr. E's Doll Museum blog. Ellen is a fan and collector of R. John Wright dolls and we were fortunate to have her guest blog for us about the Hummel series. Enjoy part two!

The Happy Wanderer

I love to go a-wandering,
Along the mountain track,
And as I go, I love to sing,
My knapsack on my back.

Chorus:
Val-deri,Val-dera,
Val-deri,
Val-dera-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha
Val-deri,Val-dera.
My knapsack on my back.

Oh, may I go a-wandering
Until the day I die!
Oh, may I always laugh and sing,
Beneath God's clear blue sky!

Every time I look at M.I. Hummel’s “The Merry Wanderer”, verses from this song go through my head.  Wandering has always been part of my life; I was born in Europe, in Athens to be precise, and my dad was in the air force and in NATO.  My mother was always travelling, and also lived in Europe during World War II.  She had a fellowship in Mexico, and scholarships to study all over the United States.  She went to Europe to marry my Dad on The Olympia, a ship made by The White Star Line and noted this in a travel journal (yes, it was The Titanic White Star Line!). Later, my dad was a business man who travelled everywhere but Antarctica, but a close family friend of ours went there.  So, I guess we’re covered.

 

Picaresque characters appealed to me because I practically grew up in cars, airplanes, and the occasional ship. Huck Finn, , Lazarillo de Torme, and even Hitty, were dear to me because they, too, traveled.  They also had adventures, albeit not always good ones.  Like me, they were free spirits and adventurers.  Souvenir dolls from around the world were my first loves in the doll world because like me, they traveled. They had stories to tell of their adventures. 

Like the Merry Wanderer by RJW, inspired by M.I. Hummel’s sketch and figurine,  dolls travel to our collections as real goodwill ambassadors, constantly telling our stories, humming a simple tune.