American Girl presents Melody Ellison from Mo-Town

On CBS today, American Girl (Mattel) unveiled the upcoming new addition to their doll line up:

Melody Ellison is a 9 year old African Girl in Detroit in the 1960s – she loves her music, but she also stands with her friends and family to fight for civil rights and equality.

african american doll melody ellison

Melody Ellison will be sold later this year (2016) and will likely retail for $115. She is American Girl’s 3rd Historical Doll who is African American. She is from Michigan.

Introducing Melody Ellison – Release date and more

While the doll is not yet available for purchase (she will be available in late July 2016), her first book is available on Amazon. Here is the description:

Melody Ellison is an optimistic, enthusiastic girl growing up in Detroit, Michigan during the civil rights movement of the 1960s. She’s excited and proud to share a special surprise with her family—she’s been chosen to sing a solo for Youth Day at her church! But what song will she choose? She gets advice from her big brother, and is also inspired by her older sister, but it’s the inspirational words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that help her pick the perfect song.

There are many unfair things happening during Melody’s time, even to people in her own family. But it’s an unimaginable tragedy in the South that leaves Melody silent. Who can help her lift her voice and sing —who will inspire her to “keep stepping”?

Melody will be American Girl’s third African American doll in the line up. 

Other African American dolls from the line up include:

About the doll:

  • It appears the doll comes from the Sonali mold, who was a friend of 2009 Girl of the Year, Chrissa Maxwell.
  • American Girl claims they worked with an advisory board to ensure as much authenticity in the story, and the doll’s look and accessories.
  • It is said they consulted the advisory board 6 or 7 times specifically about Melody’s hair.
  • There are complaints that while the model for the books has dimples, this doll does not
  • 18” tall
  • Fits standard mold
  • To be determined if her face will be different on various dolls like many are finding variations on the current Lea doll (good girl, versus resting b!tch face)

Melody will be available later this year in late July. At that time Melody will become the newest Historical doll (now known as BeForever dolls),  and Maryellen Larkin, who was the fourteenth Historical Character, and the firstBeForever exclusive character, representing the 1950s. Maryellen was released in 2015.

Now, in case you weren’t aware, on March 1 we will be launching our first giveaway! Addy Walker, an actual 1993 Pleasant Company doll, with almost her entire meet will be available for someone to try and win! (Bloggers, cohost spots and promotional spots are still available, click here to sign up).

What part of this new doll do you like most?