Ikoku Fertility Dolls

(Photographs and information are courtesy of a museum benefactor.)

Name:  Ikoku Fertility Dolls (Ngide) from the Turkana people of Northwestern Kenya

Made by and When:  Regional handicraft for the tourist trade in Kenya; date unknown

Material:  Unjointed carved wood figures with leather and bead work

Marks:  None

Height:  17- and 14 inches, respectively

Hair, Eyes, Mouth:  The hair is fiber, perhaps strands of rope which have been untwisted and darkened.  The eyes are inset beads.  The other features are carved.

Clothes:  Leather with bead work

Other:  Ngide means child. See a group of four Kenya Turkana Tribe Ngide dolls at the National Costume Dolls website.

“This type of doll is carved by the father for a maturing daughter; the Turkana people believe that if the girl treats the doll as a real baby, she will successfully bear a child.”



Images of Turkana Women

Navigate here to see images of Turkana women.


Your comments are valued. Donations aid the initiative to preserve Black-doll history. 

If you subscribe to DeeBeeGee’s Virtual Black Doll Museum™ by email, be sure to click the post title in the email, which links to the website to view all text and associated media. Please “like” and share this installation with your social media doll contacts. To subscribe, add your email address to the subscribe or sign-up field in the footer or right sidebar. 

Published by DeeBeeGee

Doll collector, historian, co-founder of the first e-zine devoted to collecting black dolls; author of black-doll reference books, doll blogs, and doll magazine articles.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: