She also has personally met all of the 44 original Japanese Friendship Dolls that have been located as of April 2003. In total, 58 Friendship Dolls were sent to the US from Japan in 1927. Described in one newspaper article as "an expert on the dolls," she has traveled throughout the U.S. to help identify and catalog the dolls and arrange for their conservation.
In March 2004, Michiko Takaoka's book in Japanese entitled Ningyo Taishi (Doll Ambassadors) was published by Nikkei BP. She tells about the history of the 58 beautiful Japanese dolls that came to the US in 1927. She also describes her exciting visits around the country to search for and confirm the identification of the Japanese Friendship Dolls. The book can be purchased from Amazon Japan (in Japanese only).
Photo courtesy of Mukogawa Fort Wright Institute
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