What Kind of Ventriloquist Figure?

I get all kinds of emails from different people wanting to know what kind of ventriloquist figure they have.

This email and story came from Andrew Leavenworth. He wanted to know what kind of ventriloquist doll he had and tell “his story.”

I thought it was cute and he gave me permission to share it with you.


Hi Dan,

I have had this little guy in the various houses I have rented over the years.

When I first moved in with my former roommate, Jo Ann, she said that ventriloquist dolls always freaked her out. I just laughed and said she watched too many Twilight Zones and horror movies and I put him up on the old piano in our living room.

Later, that night at around 2 a.m. she said she heard notes on the piano playing! She was too scared to go into the living room that night. She was sure that the doll was playing the piano. She told me the story the next day.

I told her the next time it happened we had to go into the living room and turn on the lights and see what was going on.

Several nights passed by and no piano playing. Then, just when we thought she had imagined the whole thing, the piano started playing again! This time I heard it and we both went to the living room and turned on the lights.

There was Jo Ann’s black and white cat, Elektra, walking across the keys a few steps at a time and enjoying the vibration and sound of the piano as she walked. Elektra stared at us with big eyes, like she had been “caught in the act.” We laughed so hard!

Here is a photo of the “little man” who has scared many of my former roommates over the years.

I’d love to hear any ideas on his origins.





Of course I let Andrew know that he has an Effanbee Charlie McCarthy.

Thanks, Andrew for letting me share this story.




Dan Willinger is a ventriloquism enthusiast and ventriloquist figure collector. He has been collecting for over 25 years. He created the Ventriloquist Central Collection. It now has over 100 ventriloquist figures and over 50 of them are Frank Marshall figures. Because of his love for the art of ventriloquism, Mr. Willinger created the website Ventriloquist Central. For more information about the website, go to: http://www.ventriloquistcentral.com

Copyright 2009 by Dan Willinger

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