So where do babies come from? Does the stork bring them? Here in North Georgia, everyone knows that babies come from the cabbage patch!
Maybe you’ve heard of the Cabbage Patch Kids. They were originally marketed in the late 1970s as soft-sculpture dolls known as the Little People Originals. Hand-signed by creator Xavier Roberts, they could be “adopted” for a fee of $40. In 1978, Roberts and five friends incorporated Original Appalachian Artworks, Inc. and renovated a turn of the century medical facility in Cleveland, Georgia, creating “BabyLand General® Hospital” which was opened to the public.
In 1982, Original Appalachian Artworks, Inc. signed a long term licensing agreement with a major toy manufacturer to produce a toy replica of the hand made soft sculpture dolls, and the name Little People® was changed to the “Cabbage Patch Kids®”. The Cabbage Patch Kids dolls went on record as the most successful new doll introduction in the history of the toy industry.
Cabbage Patch dolls have served as official mascots of U.S. Olympic teams, have been featured many times on national television, and were honored on one of 15 stamps commemorating the 1980s in the U.S. Postal Service’s “Celebrate The Century” stamp program.
A few years ago, in time to celebrate their 25th anniversary, the Cabbage Patch Kids moved to a new location not far from the original Babyland General Hospital. The new facility is a 70,000 square-foot building that sits on 96 acres with a lovely view of the mountains, and it’s only a ten-minute drive from our house.
Last month, for Cee’s Odd Ball Challenge, I posted this photo of grandson Ben resting in the cabbage leaves and said I would soon do a post explaining the cabbage. Well, we were visiting the home of the Cabbage Patch Kids.
At first Ben didn’t want to go into the building. He told his mom and me that we could go in, and he would just sit on the front porch and rock in a rocking chair. It took a while before I realized that his reluctance was because he thought it was a place for babies, and he’s not a baby. But once in, he seemed to enjoy it, especially when he saw the toy store inside. And he enjoyed seeing the soft-sculpture dolls that still are handmade by folks here in Appalachia and can be adopted just like the much-less-expensive toy versions.
Here are a few more photos from our visit…
In the end Ben got his wish to sit on the front porch and rock in a rocking chair…
If you’re ever in Northeast Georgia, come to Cleveland in White County and visit Babyland General Hospital where babies really do come from the cabbage patch!