“Adopt-A-Norfin” - Thomas DAM TROLL Dolls
After many years of disappearance in the USA, in the mid 1980’s the E.F.S. Marketing Associates of Farmingdale NY was one of the few USA companies who was granted permission to import DAM trolls (Dam Things Aps) from Denmark back into the U.S.A. Many of these newer DAM’s were re-sold under the registered name of “Adopt-A-Norfin,” they came with distinctive turquoise blue hang-tags. The NORFIN name was registered to the E.F.S Marketing Company (the NORFIN trademark name was- filed on Dec 30, 1982 and cancelled on Jan 22, 2005. For reference/source please refer to U.S. Patent & Trademark website– use TESS search trademark option, basic search/new user, type in NORFIN then click on- SN 73407799). The DAM company itself had nothing to do with implementation of the NORFIN trademark/name.
The re-appearance of these DAM trolls was eagerly accepted by the baby-boomers from the 1960’s who remembered these trolls from their childhood. But there was still stiff competition at this time with the knock-off trolls already being sold in the U.S.A., by various companies like Wishnik, Uneeda, Applause and Russ Berrie. Shown below are shown a few of the Norfins that were sold from mid 1980’s to early 1990’s. The majority of these early “Norfins” had FELT clothing, with a few exceptions like the anatomically correct baby troll dolls. Most of these DAM trolls, were made in Denmark but a few are marked as- Made in China.
Anatomically Correct Baby Troll Dolls- shown in above photos are DAM’s anatomically correct baby dolls, in original mint condition with factory made clothing. These babies are one of the more unique versions created by Thomas Dam– with a cross between a humanoid and almost troll-like features. For adults who were hesitant about giving their children dolls with sexual characteristics or perhaps for those who couldn’t make up their mind if they wanted a boy or a girl— there was also an “un-sexed” version (very smooth between, like a Barbie doll)—this troll is shown in the first photo of the sitting baby and in the second photo of the first baby standing at the back. All of these babies are all marked on the back of their bodies (see photo below)– MADE IN DENMARK BY DAM 1974 ©. It is hard to make out the markings on the back of some of these babies. They came with rooted hair and plastic human-like brown eyes. There were two skin-tones offered—a flesh colored with blonde hair and chocolate colored with black hair. Head, arms and legs are fully articulated on all. Girls (and un-sexed) came with a tee-shirt like top trimmed with lace, one of the girls shown in first photo even came with a pink striped top that had lace and a tiny embroidered flower. A few girls even had a sweet two piece playsuit that consisted of a top with matching panties (picture shown above was a girl that was found on e-bay). Boys came with a simple tee-shirt top that was trimmed at edges or with a very sweet two piece shirt and jumper set (playsuit). All clothing had removable snaps. In the “Adopt-A Norfin” 1984 brochure the series styles are- #3301– flesh girl, #3302-chocolate girl, #3303– flesh boy, #3304-chocolate boy. I believe the unsexed version is #3300. These babies each stand 11 1/2” high. I believe this was the first and last run of this troll/doll type, but I could be wrong as a girl with longer rooted hair in a dress with a box was also seen on e-bay. These babies originally sold for about $25, and can still be found on the secondary market for anywhere from $20 and up.
There were several other trolls sold under the “Adopt-A-Norfin” name that were theme specific. The unique 9 1/4” high “Paddy” troll (#6047) with his synthetic lime green hair and two-toned green felt outfit appeared around St. Patrick’s day (in 1992), the only mark he has is on his back– Thomas DAM © 1977 Made in Denmark. The 9 1/4” in high “Neandertroll” (#6052) with his spotted fabric tunic and long white Icelandic wool hair knotted with a white plastic bone. The very unique “Brother John” (#1437) with his rooted curly synthetic hair and a bald top turns his eyes up towards the heavens, he has a moveable head and both of his arms move, painted black shoes.
The very interesting “Storybook Troll” (#101) with The Tiny Ones Goodbye Party has the story attached to a box that has one of the smallest trolls –aka– Tiny One (3” high with synthetic hair, brown plastic eyes, 1 pc felt dress glued in back). The story details why the trolls left their homeland & set off to America, it has lovely color illustrations. The “Little Tykes” consisted of the smaller trolls with upward eyes in various outfits, synthetic hair no moving parts. There was a bunch of odd stuff such as the Norfin- Christmas stocking, digital wrist watch, magnetic glow in the dark and other Norfin troll magnets, key chains, pencil toppers, bendables, etc
Even if you can’t find the “Norfin” trolls being sold in local retail stores you can sometimes still find them on E-bay (some still have their blue tags & some don’t). Read descriptions carefully, as some folks like to make OOAK’s out of these DAM trolls (by replacing original eyes, hair & clothing with non-standard issue). Some people even dye the bodies of these trolls, most sellers are honest in their descriptions and will say if the troll has been altered or if the hair/eyes were replaced. If you are not looking for an all original DAM troll and are purchasing simply for aesthetic purposes then some of the OOAK’s are really quite stunning, E-bay is an excellent place to find many of these OOAK’s (One-Of-A-Kind) trolls. Also check out my OOAK Troll Webpage for other stunning trolls that other collectors and troll artists have made.
There are also several newer DAM trolls which can still be found in their original outfits on the secondary market for $30 and up. Most have synthetic hair but some of the girls do still have the authentic Icelandic wool hair. The newer “Skovtrold Pige med hale” tailed troll girl has genuine Icelandic wool hair on her head but her tail has synthetic hair, the boy has synthetic hair (their tails have wire in them and are poseable), their eyes are brown plastic. Some like the “Troldeviking” come with neat accessories (removable plastic horned helmet , tunic, leggings & sword). Many of the newer DAM’s can be found on E-bay or other social medias. Be sure to check Facebook there are several TROLL Collector Groups and also groups dedicated specifically to buying/selling trolls (FB groups like– Trolls For Sale! The Club to Buy & Sell Troll Dolls). These newer trolls can be easily recognized by their parchment colored tan DAM hang tags (as shown in photos below) some are made in DENMARK others are made in CHINA.
This page was last updated; 1 July 2018