Little Orphan Annie - in all her forms.
Click on the gallery to see all the images.
Mary Alice Smith
Mary Alice Smith was the REAL Little Orphant Annie. She was actually an "orphant Allie" but a typesetter misread the poet, James Whitcomb Riley's, handwriting and changed the "Allie" to Annie."
Mary Alice (Smith) Gray
This is a photo that was used for publicity purposes by a man who took Mary Alice on tour after Riley's death. He would present a program on Riley, and then bring Orphan Annie out to answer questions from the audience. Mary Alice was in her 70's when she did this.
Mary Alice (Smith) Gray
Another photo of Mary Alice (Smith) Gray - Riley's Little Orphant Allie/Annie
LOA by Will Vawter
This is an iconic image of Annie by Riley's main illustrator, Will Vawter. Vawter used people from Brown County, Indiana - where he lived in an artist colony - as inspiration for his drawings. This one is of Sarah Spicer Hardin who was 8 at the time. Hardin stated she remembered Vawter as a kindly man who gave her 50 cents for posing for this picture, and he always had candy in his pockets.
LOA by Vawter
And Thist as she clicked her heels to turn and run and hide, there was two great big black things -astandin by her side. This is a verse from Riley's Little Orphant Annie poem - -and Vawter's illustration aptly illuminates the verse.
LOA by Betts
Little Orphant Annie by Ethel Franklin Betts. Ethel Franklin Betts was an artist from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This image appeared on the cover of Riley's books: "Riley Child Verse" and "A Host of Children: James Whitcomb Riley." This is an image that inspired a Tiffany glass window design.
Little Orphant Annie - a Tiffany stained glass design - based on an Ethel Franklin Betts illustration. To my knowledge - this window was never made.
Annies portrait by Betts
Little Orphant Annie as depicted for Riley's book "Orphant Annie Storybook" by Ethel Franklin Betts. Riley gave the artist a description of Annie - and she drew this image from that description.
1918 LOA ad
An ad for the 1918 Little Orphant Annie film staring Colleen Moore. This movie is based on the James Whitcomb Riley poem.
Cover of the Little Orphant Annie DVD - which has the 1918 Silent film.
LOA 1918 screen shot
A colorized screen shot of the 1918 Little Orphant Annie film. Colleen Moore portrayed Annie - - she is seen here in the blue dress. The man is supposed to be her uncle and the lady is the matron for the orphanage where she lived.
Colleen Moore as LOA
Colleen Moore as Little Orphant Annie from the 1918 film.
Raggedy Ann Patent
The Patent that Johnny Gruelle submitted for Raggedy Ann. Raggedy Ann is named for two of James Whitcomb Riley's poems - "The Raggedy Man" and "Little Orphant Annie."
Modern Raggedy Ann
Raggedy Ann - a creation by Johnny Gruelle - a close friend of James Whitcomb Riley.
Orphant Annie Storybook cover
Orphant Annie Story Book by Johnny Gruelle. This book was written in memory of James Whitcomb Riley - the creator of the Orphant Annie character. Gruelle grew up in the same Indianapolis neighborhood where Riley lived. Upon the poet's death, Gruelle created this book in memory of his good friend.
Orphan Annie by Gruelle
Little Orphant Annie as depicted by illustrator - Johnny Gruelle in the Little Orphant Annie Story book.
Little Orphan Annie Comic Strip
The comic strip Orphan Annie - created by Harold Gray
Orphan Annie and Sandy
Little Orphan Annie as depicted by Harold Gray. Gray's LOA is noted for her "empty eyes."
Annie's first strip
The very first Orphan Annie Comic Strip by Harold Gray
1932 Little Orphan Annie movie
Little Orphant Annie Ad for the 1932 movie starring Mitzi Green
Mitzi Green star of 1932 LOA
Mitzi Green as Little Orphant Annie
1938 Little Orphan Annie movie
1938 Little Orphan Annie starring Ann Gillis ad
LOA 1938 Ann Gillis movie still
Ann Gillis starring in a LOA from 1938
Radio Orphan Annie
Radio Orphan Annie was the first program targeted towards children. It's first sponsor was Ovaltine
Shirley Bell was Radio Orphan Annie
Shirley Bell - the original star of Radio Orphan Annie
Radio Orphan Annie Theme Song
Who is that little chatterbox?
Radio Orphan Annie.jpg
Radio Orphan Annie had a Secret Society where you could get decoder pins to decode the secret message from each radio program.
LOA and Captain Sparks
Captain Sparks with Quaker Wheat Sparkies would sponsor Radio Orphan Annie during the war years.
Orphant Annie Millies Miniatures
Orphant Annie as a Millie's Miniatures doll. Millie Davis was the creator of these handmade dolls that were made in Riley's hometown of Greenfield and sold from the James Whitcomb Riley Boyhood Home.
LOA by Madam Alexander
James Whitcomb Riley's version of Little Orphant Annie - as depicted by Madam Alexander
Orphant Annie by Lenci Mascotte
A Lenci Mascotte doll - representing Riley's version of LOA
Modern Annie Comic Strip logo
The modern logo for the Little Orphan Annie Comic strip. She also has a totally new look.
Modern Comic strip Annie's new look
Annie - the musical opened on Broadway in 1977 - based on the Harold Gray comic strip
Andrea McCardle as LOA
Andrea McCardle was the first LOA on stage
Annie the movie
Annie the movie came out in 1982 - based on the popular musical
Aileen Quinn as LOA
Aileen Quinn starred in Annie the movie
Orphant annie by Robin Woods
Riley's Orphant Annie as a doll made by Robin Woods
Orphant annie by Wendy Lawton
Riley's Little Orphant Annie as a doll by Wendy Lawton
LOA by Jamie Stempnik.jpeg
A merging of the two Annie characters in a modern rendition by Jamie Stempnik - both the elements of Riley's character - the broom and the verse above - and elements of the Gray character - the empty eyes and the dress are seen in this interpretation of Little Orphant Annie
The poster from the 2014 version of the Annie movie.