“Little Orphan Annie—Gee Whiskers!”

“Leapin’ lizards—Gee whiskers!”

I loved the fact that Annie was inspired by a real person. Author Harold Gray reported that Annie’s origin lay in a chance meeting he had with a ragamuffin while wandering the streets of Chicago looking for cartooning ideas.

Shirley Bell Cole, the Voice of Little Orphan Annie, a role she played on the radio from 1930 to 1940. (Photo by Marc Hauser)

Little Orphan Annie debuted as a comic strip in 1921. She was a generous, compassionate, optimistic orphan of no definitive age who never seems to age. She is highly independent and wanders through a corrupt world while experiencing a series of unrelated adventures. Beginning her life in a dreary orphanage, she is adopted by Daddy Warbucks, a wealthy industrialist. Her character is endearing and unique. Her best friend is her dog Sandy. Annie’s life is complicated by thugs and gangsters, as well as do-gooders and bureaucrats. Her character endeared me to her because of my own parallel experiences as an adoptee. Like Annie, I was unfamiliar with my own beginnings, loved my dog Toby, and was adopted by a wealthy business owner.

Judith Land | Adoption FAQ’s | Adoption Detective Book | Cartoon | Adoption Story


About Judith Land

Judith Land lives in Colorado and Arizona with husband and coauthor Martin Land. Judith is a former nurse, retail shop owner, college instructor and avid outdoor person. Her book "Adoption Detective: Memoir of an Adopted Child" is a true story detailing the journey of Judith Romano, foster child and adoptee, as she discovers fragments of her background, and then sets out to solve the mystery as an adult. She has reached readers in 192 countries. "Mothers and fathers everywhere in the world need to understand that children are forever and always." --Judith Land
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5 Responses to “Little Orphan Annie—Gee Whiskers!”

  1. Pingback: Are adoptees victims of circumstances? Adoption Detective | Judith Land | Adoption Detective | A Novel By Judith Land

  2. catfishmom says:

    It’s funny, Judith…all along and I never even realized it, Annie was one of the most painful yet familiar movies for me to watch. I was mesmerized by it and yet cried every time I watched it and knew every song. My adoptive dad was just like Daddy Warbucks…he ignored me and was a workaholic. My mother was absent and left me with babysitters. I have not had a happy ending with him but I am still optimistic with my relationship with my adoptive mother.

    I am 48 years old and am only now realizing that I named my dog Sandy. I am not sure if it was before or after I saw the movie. I am also a redhead with freckles. It’s incredible how reunion can open up the mind…indescribably wonderful and freeing.

    • Judith Land says:

      Dear Catfishmom, It is amazing the way our unconscious mind files away so much information. My brain seems to be like an old computer, it has lots of memory but very slow recall of facts, figures and names. Your story about ‘Sandy’ reminds me that I named my first two dolls Barbara and Mary—I never realized why I chose those names until 30 years later when I met my foster family and discovered those were the names of my wonderful foster sisters who had never forgotten me. Obviously, I had missed them too. Judith

    • Judith Land says:

      Catfishmom, Wow! We have some things in common. I loved reading your comments and all the similarities you share with Little Orphan Annie. She was a ‘ragamuffin’ before she was adopted—I bet you were a princess. Judith

      • catfishmom says:

        My original dad treats me like a princess…his family and my mother’s mother covered up my existence…I now have my real dad in my life

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