Jules Nicholas Steiner

Jules Nicholas Steiner is the founder of the doll-making firm Steiner. Steiner produced dolls from 1855 to 1908, during which time several successors ran the company, but still maintained the “Steiner” name. Successors included Amedee Onesime Lafosse after he died his widow, Marie Lafosse, continued running the business and taking out patents. She was followed by Jules Mettais. Edmond Daspres was the final successor to the Steiner firm. He registered for the patent for the New Walking and Talking Doll in July 1902. Not much is known about Steiner’s earlier career, but he started out in Paris as a watchmaker who ventured into the toy-making field. He had many innovations and patents in the field of toys and later in doll-making. Most of these inventions were linked with the movement in toys or dolls.

Up until 1875-1876, Jules Steiner made and sold three types of dolls: the kicking-crying mechanical baby, the waltzing lady, and Motschmann-Type Steiner, a kind of articulated doll with opposing bisque and soft parts. The period of 1880 to 1890 is considered to be the “Golden Age” of Steiner dolls. In the Spring of 1880 Steiner rented out his business to Monsieur Bourgoin. There were several series and figures of the Steiner molds produced under Bourgoin’s reign. The most found today are the A-Series and the C-Series.