Otto married Annette Parker in Paris on May 3, 1930. Although Robert seems to be nothing but a rather careworn doll; dressed in a sailor suit, holding a toy dog, covered in small marks that seem to appear a little too like scars, with small beady eyes and a smirk on his face, many agree that he is directly responsible for a veritable bounty of woe. [6][7] It is annually rotated to the Old Post Office and Customhouse in October. Other stories claim that the doll moved voodoo figurines around the room, and was "aware of what went on around him". Mrs. But the most popular story is that he was given the doll by a woman who served his family. Despite his banishment, the Otto family were said to hear Robert the doll moving frequently around the upstairs portion of the house, with his footsteps said to echo thro… Servants arrived and promptly quit their jobs in quick succession, and it’s also claimed that the aunt that banished Robert to the attic died the same night that he was put there. Robert Eugene Otto died in 1974, and the house was sold soon after to Myrtle Reuter. Staff at the museum claim that Robert has been found in different positions within his case, that footsteps have been heard around the museum at night with no apparent explanation for the noise and that Robert’s expression has been known to change in a from neutral to nasty in the blink of an eye. Some suggested the doll could blink its eyes are certain moments, or even run around with evil laughter. Oh, and if you’re wondering where Robert got his name? To learn more about Robert the doll and the story behind him, you can visit the museum website – or, you might even want to send Robert a letter and see whether you get a response….

Schoolchildren and almost anyone walking past the property would say that they often saw the doll disappear from sight before appearing again before their eyes. We’ve put together a quick article on the true story behind Annabelle from the Conjuring! She and her visitors also claim that the already creepy expression on Robert’s face appeared to change when anyone discussed Eugene in a negative way.

Some say that by disrespecting Robert at the museum, they’ve fallen victim to a variety of misfortunes and bad luck. In 1994, the doll was donated to the East Martello Museum in Key West, Florida, where it eventually became a popular tourist attraction. He would also blame strange incidents around the house like rearranged furniture or destroyed toys on his doll, claiming that “Robert did it.”. The adult Gene was constantly accompanied by Robert much to the distaste of his wife, who is said to have loathed the doll. Many people avoided the house entirely so that they could avoid Robert. It’s thought to be Otto’s own. From Eugene. That outfit? Naturally, he didn’t take particularly kindly to this, and so Robert the haunted doll once more placed demands on Eugene, requesting the Turret Room of the house because “he wanted a room with a view of the street.” Gene spent all of his time in the Turret Room with Robert, painting and talking to his doll, until his death in 1974. Still other legends claim that the doll "vanished" after Otto's house changed ownership a number of times after his death,[5][8] or that young Otto triggered the doll's supernatural powers by blaming his childhood mishaps on the doll. It’s thought to be made by Steiff, and perhaps to have manufactured as part of a clown or jester display. He worked as an artist and later married, and kept Eugene propped up in a window of his house. According to legend, he was given a doll by his Jamaican nurse that was made in this likeness. Eugene took Robert everywhere with him, and even though the Robert doll was probably a little bit large and unwieldy for a boy of his age – Eugene was thought to be around 8 when given Robert, and Robert stands at around three feet tall – he was never seen without his beady-eyed companion in tow. Furniture could often be found overturned, toys of Eugene’s were often found ripped apart, and when the Otto family entered Eugene’s room, he was found huddled on his bed, petrified. As a result, Myrtle also acquired old, haunted Robert, and his strange behavior never ceased. But Robert was cursed – she’d used some of the voodoo that she’d been fired for on the doll to bring fear and discomfort to the family.

Eugene eventually moved away as an adult, and even got married.

Eugene was often heard whispering to Robert, which was entirely normal.

After some investigation by the Fort West Martello Museum where Robert resides today, it’s now thought that the doll was never actually intended to be a doll. Its Colonial Queen Ann style, with numerous graceful columns, verandas and gingerbread, is highlighted by the magnificent presence of its turret. Robert was once owned by Key West, Florida painter and author, Robert Eugene Otto. The doll was reportedly manufactured by the Steiff Company of Germany, purchased by Otto's grandfather while on a trip to Germany in 1904, and given to young Otto as a birthday gift. As a result, she acquired the doll as well. Visitors to her new home didn’t like Robert, and found that he’d appear and disappear at will. She finally donated the doll to the Fort East Martello Museum in Key West, Florida. The doll was reportedly manufactured by the Steiff Company of Germany, purchased by Otto's grandfather while on a trip to Germany in 1904, and given to young Otto as a birthday gift. The couple returned to the Otto family home in Key West to live there until Otto died in 1974. [3], Coordinates: 24°33′09″N 81°45′18″W / 24.552389°N 81.754869°W / 24.552389; -81.754869, "Robert the Haunted Doll: Creeping Out Floridians Since 1904", "The Story Behind the World's Most Terrifying Haunted Doll", "Robert The Doll – Artist House Key West – Key West Guesthouse", "History of Fort East Martello – Key West Art and Historical Society", "Fort East Martello Museum (Key West, FL): Top Tips Before You Go (with Photos) – TripAdvisor", "Halloween Story The Legend of Robert the Doll", "TAPS hunts for things that go bump in the night", "Filmmaker Andrew Jones Talks Killer Dolls, Jurassic Terrors, and Nazi Werewolves", "Remote Controlled: Stars of Amazon's 'Lore' Discuss Horror Stories, What Scares Them",,, Short description is different from Wikidata, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, The doll was exhibited at TapsCON, a convention hosted by, The doll and a replica doll sold at the gift shop at the Martello museum appeared in the second season of, The doll was featured in an episode of the podcast and TV series, This page was last edited on 2 November 2020, at 18:19. It was only when a deep voice was heard answering back to Eugene that things started to get a little bit strange.

It was something that displeased his wife greatly, as she thought her husband was simply too attached to the doll. The Robert the doll story continues well past Eugene’s death, and the legend continues even to this day. Robert the Doll is famous around the world, but perhaps even more famous because of recent films, the Annabelle Doll is another haunted doll you have to learn about. Some versions of the legend claim that a young girl of "Bahamian descent" gave Otto the doll as a gift or as "retaliation for a wrongdoing". Eventually Robert Eugene Otto loved the doll so much he would call it by his own name, going by Eugene for himself, and would often refer to the doll in the first person. Despite his banishment, the Otto family were said to hear Robert the doll moving frequently around the upstairs portion of the house, with his footsteps said to echo throughout areas of the property that were completely empty.

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