Collecting dolls is intense enough. Collecting HAUNTED dolls? That's really graduate-level eccentricity. And yet, if that appeals, the Internet is ready and waiting to facilitate your interest.

NPR picks up on the phenomenon, first reported by Jak Hutchcraft at Vice. One day he was browsing the "Everything Else" section on Ebay and spotted a listing for a "nasty perverse possessed doll," which netted an astounding $1,500. Digging a little deeper, he discovered that with the 2004 sale of a "haunted" wine cabinet "came an abundance of purportedly possessed objects; plenty of online vendors were suddenly keen to shift the dozens of devilish dolls they conveniently had stored away in their garages, some for £30 [$45], some for £300 [$450]."

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In his quest to understand this unlikely market, Hutchcraft spoke to Jayne Harris, the proprietor of haunted-dolls.com, who seemed pretty low-key about the whole thing. (In fact, he said most of the people he talked to "pretty much completely normal.")

"I've always said that I don't expect anyone that hasn't had a paranormal experience to believe in [haunted dolls]. I probably wouldn't," she explained. "I've got an interest in UFOs, but I'm still not convinced because I've not had any experiences in that field. But whether you believe or not, things like ouija boards do actually work."

A parapsychic medium suggested it was probably paranormal investigators making many of the purchases, but Harris suggested many of her buyers were seeking some sort of companionship or connection. Hutchcraft explained the appeal to NPR:

"Some people want to connect solely with the spirit," he explains. "Some people buy them just for the doll because they're doll collectors and the spirited aspect of it is just a secondary thing. I thought it was baffling, really, because I can look past the ghost as long as it's a cute doll."

Everybody needs a hobby, I guess!

Photo via Shutterstock/Jakub Krechowicz.


Contact the author at kelly@jezebel.com.