Bisque doll

UNL restores a 95-year-old doll

LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) – Morrill Hall at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is steeped in history. Among the objects, a special Japanese doll from the 1920s, which is restored and displayed from Friday to October.

Inside Morrill Hall, Miss Mie, a Japanese friendship doll, gets some touch-ups ahead of her 95th birthday.

Japanese religious tradition says dolls have spirits, so Masaru Aoki, a doll restorer for the Yoshitoku Doll Company, reverently cares for Miss Mie.

“He treats her like his daughter and granddaughter,” an interpreter from Aoki said. “That’s how much he loved her.”

Aoki flew in from Japan to help restore and repair Miss Mie, who turns 95 in October. He fixed it three times in total.

“He doesn’t think the damage is that bad because the people at Lincoln are taking good care of her,” the interpreter said.

In 1927, children from America and Japan exchanged dolls as a sign of friendship and peace. Miss Mie was one of 58 sent from Japan and was donated to Morrill Hall in 1928.

“His point, really his goal, is to improve the relationship between the people of Japan and the United States,” said Dr. Susan Weller, director of the Museum of Natural History at the University of Nebraska in Morrill. Lobby.

Miss Mie has cracks on her legs as well as near her ears and nose. His skin absorbs water like a human’s, so every step of the restoration process is meticulous.

“It’s very delicate porcelain,” Dr. Weller said. “If you plan to apply drywall, it will take multiple coats and they will need to dry in between and harden and then you will need to paint over it.”

After the job is done, Aoki hopes that Miss Mie will continue to be loved and cared for.

“For another five years, for another 50 years, for another 100 years, please take good care of Miss Mie. She will live on.

The museum hopes these restorations will enable them to send Miss Mie back to Japan for her 100th birthday.