Babyland General Hospital
I remember going with my father ..., waiting among dozens of other eager third graders for the employees to put out the hourly allotment of five Cabbage Patch Kids. We waited for quite some time in that line so that I could get my hands on one of Xavier Roberts' classic dolls. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity, victory was mine. I had in my hands the yellow box with the clear window.

Cabbage Patch Dolls were the first in a series of "crazes" that swept the United States starting in the early 1980's, although Babyland General Hospital had been giving birth to the moppets since 1978.

Xavier Roberts, often pictured in a cowboy hat, came up with idea of custom-made dolls "born" in a cabbage patch. His hometown of Cleveland, Georgia was the place he chose to test his idea and even he did not foresee how successful the idea would be. Originally selling the premium-priced dolls to visitors, Xavier called them "Little People," gave birth to them in a cabbage patch, and gave each one had a unique name. Demand at the tiny Original Appalachian Artworks quickly outpaced supply. Since the name Little People was common he began calling the dolls Cabbage Patch Kids and entered into a merchandising agreement with Coleco to sell the dolls.

Within 16 months more than 3 million unique dolls were produce by the toy manufacturer and another million by Mr. Roberts' company. Associated merchandising brought in millions of dollars. Over the years more than 80 million Kids have made it to market, only to be "adopted" by eager children and adults.

A stork points the way the "hospital" and the parking lot is packed on weekend afternoons. People can visit the cabbage patch where the dolls are born and the staff is dressed appropriately in nurses or doctors uniforms. Additional displays show the dolls going to school and a hospital where original dolls can receive "emergency care."

This is a great place to spend some time while roaming the North Georgia mountains, with or without kids. The displays are all high quality and the people are friendly and helpful. Of course, you can't beat the price(free).

Location: 19 Underwood Street,
Cleveland, Georgia
Directions: From Atlanta, take I-85 north to I-985 (Exit 113). In Gainesville, take U.S. Highway 129 north (Exit 22) to Cleveland, Georgia. Babyland General is on the left, one block east of the highway on Underwood Street.
Additional information:
Hours:Sunday 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, other days 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Date added: November 16, 2003
Last update: December 7, 2003

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