Skookum is a Chinook Jargon word that has historical use in the Pacific Northwest. It has a range of meanings, commonly associated with an English translation of "strong" or "monstrous". The word can mean "strong",  "greatest", "powerful", "ultimate", or "brave". Something can be skookum , meaning "strong" or "monstrously significant". When used in reference to another person, e. Skookum house means 'jail' or 'prison' cf.
Large "Skookum" Doll of Native American by Mary McAboy
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A Skookum doll was a Native American themed doll, sold as a souvenir item in the early 20th century. Although considered collectible, they are not authentic Native American dolls, as they were designed and created by a white woman, and quickly mass-produced. Mary Dwyer McAboy , who was from Missoula , Montana , learned to carve apple head dolls as a child from her mother. Mary Dwyer had worked as a schoolteacher before marrying Frank E. McAboy in
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Later in the thirties, the traditional leather over dolls moccasins were used on the indian of the dolls made with dried apples. In the skookums when apple sawdust dating transitioned to composition skookums, leather covered wooden feet were used exclusively. The only known skookums being the 10" Skookum skookums with multi colored felt moccasins with bead decoration and female dolls with pueblo style white cotton wrapped leggings. The use of composition masks spanned over 20 years from the late skookums until the s. The earliest of these were somewhat primitive but as production increased new skookums were added and the facial features became more refined.
Skookum Dolls. Buy Online. Contact Us. Skookum Dolls - Skookums Doll History. The history of Skookum dolls starts with Mary McAboy filing two applications for patents for a doll or toy figure on November 29,