In celebration of its 35th anniversary, American Girl, the line of dolls currently owned by Mattel, has rereleased its original six dolls. One of those dolls is Josefina Montoya.
Josefina’s storyline is set in the early 19th century on America’s Southwest frontier. She is a nine-year-old little girl who is coping with the loss of her mother. But through her experience healing and with the support of her Papá, three sisters and Tía Dolores, Josefina learns that her mother’s strength still lives within her.
Jamie Cygielman, General Manager of American Girl, said the company is looking forward to inspiring and empowering the next generation of young girls with stories like Josefina’s.
“For 35 years, American Girl has created powerful stories with smart, courageous heroines that have helped shape an entire generation of women,” Cygielman said in a statement. “As we celebrate this major milestone, we’re thrilled to recognize the very first generation of American girls who grew up with these beloved, original characters and made them the phenomenon they are today.”
Faith is a major theme in Josefina’s story. She dreams of becoming a curandera–a folk healer–one day. To practice, she nurses a baby goat named Sombrita to health and saves her friend Mariana after she is bitten by a rattlesnake.
“Josefina richly captures, conveys, and re-creates a significant time, place, and heritage in New Mexican and American history that young people seldom learn about,” says Juan R. García, Associate Dean in the Department of History at the University of Arizona.
The special edition Josefina doll comes with gold hoop earrings, brown eyes and mahogany-colored hair that is styled in a side braid. She is wearing a white blouse with short, puffed sleeves and a colorful red skirt with black flower print and a white-laced hem.
Josephina is also wearing a pair of moccasins, a pendant necklace and a rebozo–a woven shawl from Mexico. Other Latina dolls created by American Girl over the years include Marisol Luna, a ballet folklórico dancer, and Luciana Vega, an aspiring astronaut.