Wednesday, 27 July 2011

The Dionne Quintuplets

Hi! I've been invited to join Glue, glitter, and Paste for a Throwback Thursday Party.
Here is my selection.
I hope you enjoy it!
  Have you ever heard the story of these beautiful and precious babies? Well, these sweet girls have always
  been dear to my heart from the first time I heard their sad life story. And I'd like to share a wee bit of what I
  know with you, if you've got a minute.
  Life began for Annette, Cecile, Marie, Yvonne, and Emilie on May 28, 1934 in Corbeil, Ontario. They were two months premature and were the first and only identical quintuplets to have ever survived. Their total weight combined was 10 lbs.,1 and a quarter ozs. Before fertility drugs existed, the odds of quintuplets being born were one in 57,000,000.Can you imagine?

    They spent the first four months with their parents before the Canadian government made them wards of
the state. They built a special compound for them across the street from their parents home and named it,
"Dafoe Hospital and Nursery" after the doctor who delivered the girls and cared for them. At this hospital there was a playgound built for the quintuplets with an area where the public could come and observe the girls. Approximately 6,ooo people per day visited there.

    As you can see from my photos Annette, Cecile, Yvonne, Marie and Emilie were used to advertise many products like Carnation milk, Quaker oats, Karo syrup, and many other products. They were also in movies.
And in 1994 a movie titled "Million Dollar Babies" was made depicting their lives. I didn't get to see this, but
I am going to look for it to , hopefully, watch.

     This is an advertisement I tore out of an old "Farmers Daughter" magazine I had years ago and framed.
Whenever I look at it I always hope that the remaining quintuplets have found happiness in life. Sadly, Emilie died in 1954 and Marie in 1970, leaving Annette, Cecile, and Yvonne surviving. I saw the remaining three ladies on TV a few months back on a documentary and these beautiful little girls have aged into quite attractive older ladies. I gathered from the interview that they have found peace in their lives finally.
I couldn't begin to cover all there is to learn about these special ladies, but there are many details on-line that can fill in the blanks for you if you're interested.
Today I want to say thank you to the Lord for all the small gifts he provides as well as the big!


  1. I always enjoy when I read a blogpost to which I can relate. I remember these quints and the hubbub surrounding them. Can you imagine life under a microscope? They were living their own reality TV show before many folks had TV in their homes.

  2. I did know a bit about their story not about one of them dying at 20.
    It is sad for sure.

  3. I have heard of them, and I think there might have been another movie done later than 1944 (seem to remember seeing it on TV, maybe it was a made for TV movie)
    You,ve peaked my interest, I think I will read up on these ladies.

  4. I have heard the name, but I don't think I've ever heard their story before. Very fascinating!

  5. I would like to know more about and why did they become wards of Canada, I wonder. Like pj said ..their own reality show...

  6. I have never heard that story before! Fascinating. I'll have to get a slide and talk about them in my next human development class.

    Yes, we made zucchini relish earlier this summer. It is SO good!

  7. We were just talking about them with my mother-in-law not long ago. My father-in-law had family who lived not far away from the Dionne quints and he went to see them once while he was visiting them.
    My mother was always interested too. I think because they were only a year younger than her and she grew up hearing about them. I have a book about them, but haven't had a chance to read it yet. I saw some little Dionne dolls in an antique store not too long ago. The price was pretty high.
    What a way to grow up...

  8. Very interesting..I am also wondering why they became wards of the court, I will check it out.

  9. Hi Kim, thanks for visiting and 'having tea' with me yesterday :-) I wish it could really happen don't you? Maybe someday. One never knows. I do remember the Dionne Quints and was quite fascinated by them as a young girl. They had such a sad childhood being made a spectacle of to the public. I love the photos you showed. Thanks for sharing this today. Have a good one! Blessings, Pamela

  10. Dear friends
    I'm so glad I sparked the interest of those of you who have never heard of the girls.
    I believe the reason they were removed from their home was because their parents already had 6other children at the time of their birth and the government deemed they didn't have the means to support them. They were returned after 9 years to their parents. They were, of course, able to make plenty of money for the family by then. It's estimated they were a more popular tourist destination than the Niagra Falls at that time, bringing in 500 million dollars for the government.

  11. I remember being so interested in them as a child. I always thought it would have been so wonderful to be a twin and I thought that would have been so much nicer. I did not know that the government took them. OR that they were used in Advertising.
    That is so sad. I will look them up on the internet. I like your pictures that you have of them.

    Very interesting. They look beautiful in the pictures.

  12. Oh yes, I remember reading about these young girls. Very interesting.
    Do they still spark an interest in Canada?

  13. I think that, overall, their story was a sad one. The surviving quints have found peace, but it was hard-earned and late in coming. They were well and truly exploited.

  14. I have seen their faces on collectible plates and such but I had no idea theirs was such a wrong up-bringing. It breaks my heart!!

    Blessings, Debbie

  15. I remember this too. I sure felt bad that they left their family. It can't have been good for them. So much in the public eye.

  16. I remember seeing their pictures in our World Book encyclopedias when I was a kid. I found them to be most interesting - I loved those World Books! I can smell those books by just thinking about them - the scent of leather bindings and slick paper - I have always had a thing for books and maybe it started then!

  17. I had of course heard of these girls but did not know these facts. How sad! I am going to look this up and learn more as soon as I get the chance. Thanks for sharing this!

  18. never heard of this -- thanks for enlighting me.. I am going now to watch the documentary..hugs

  19. I've never heard of these lovely girls before. They look so cute as little girls - and still cute as women!!

    I hope their parents didn't mind them being whisked away. Did they get any say in the matter?


  20. i never knew about this...

    happy to stop by today, my friend

    kary and teddy

  21. What an interesting post, Kimberly... I remember reading about these quints. I may have even seen a movie about them. Too bad that two of them have died... Glad the other three did get some peace in their lives.

    Thanks for such a great post.

  22. I agree, life under a microscope could really mess up a child. You can see that when you look at all the reality shows on tv with cameras right in the big middle of their life. It all depends on how the parents handle the situation. So glad they are happy, they were such beautiful children!

  23. My husband has talked about interesting..I will have to read more, or ask my hubby

  24. I saw an interview once with the last surviving quints. They were surprisingly well adjusted and not overly bitter. They could have been so angry about what happened to them. I felt so bad for their parents...they had no idea what was happening to them. A sad story is right. Great post.

  25. Hi Kimberly, I remember the Dionne Quints but haven't kept up with them. I'm so glad that the surviving three girls are doing well. I'll have to look them up and see if they married and how many children they had. Sorry to hear that 2 of them passed away. Thanks for doing this interesting post! ~Cheryl

  26. So interesting. I'd heard about them but never knew the details. Mimi

  27. How odd that the government took them as wards of the state. There's got to be more to that story. Yes, I have heard of them and have found their story fascinating. You have some lovely vintage graphics.

  28. I knew the names but not the back story. Thanks for sharing. You have peaked my interest. I may "google" them to see what happened to them.

  29. Kimberly! This is such a fascinating post, I just wanted to keep reading. Bless their hearts to be put in the public eye like that. But, it is good to know that they have grown into wonderful women. Thanks for sharing at Throwback Thursday!



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