The Curse of Robert The Doll

The Curse Of Robert The Doll

I snapped a photo of Robert The Doll before reading that he puts curses on anyone who takes his photograph. Uh oh. Surely it’s just a myth, I thought. Curious, I began reading about the doll’s history. In 1903, Robert was given to four-year old Gene Otto, who lived in Key West. As Gene grew up he blamed everything bad that happened on the doll. By the time Gene was married, Robert had taken the blame for a lifetime of lies, misdeeds, and mischief.


Robert The Doll is on display at the East Martello Museum and Fort in Key West

Some say Robert’s face had begun to change by the time Gene died in 1974, that his eyes grew more expressive. People insisted that the doll moved around and could be heard giggling behind their backs. Many who came in contact with Robert experienced bad luck, as if the doll was getting even for all the years he had been made a scapegoat. The curse of Robert The Doll grew into such a well-known legend in Key West that whenever things went wrong, locals would simply shrug and say, “Blame it on Robert.” But Robert’s real fame came when the “Chucky” horror film series (Child’s Play, Child’s Play 2, Child’s Play 3, Bride of Chucky, Seed of Chucky, etc.) came out, as they were said to have been modeled on the real-life story of Robert the Doll.

There are many theories about why Robert behaves the way he does. Some believe it is an ancient curse. Others say it is voodoo. Still others insist that Gene Otto’s ghost has returned to the doll whom he loved so much. The museum cats seem to believe in Robert’s dark powers – they keep their distance when staring up at the glass case in East Martello Museum where Robert is enthroned. People, on the other hand, tend to doubt the legend, and have suffered the consequences. Letters scattered at Robert’s feet and tacked up on an adjacent wall are testimonials from dozens of unbelievers who were cursed by Robert The Doll, such as this one:

Since our visit to the museum, we’ve been under a dark cloud.

I began to develop a rather severe toothache. Two days later, Hurricane Charly cut our vacation short and we joined the parade of evacuees leaving the islands. We were evacuated from our vacation spot three days early with my mouth in tremendous pain. My sister-in-law was also having female health issues. We were all forced to make alternate travel arrangements on the run.

My sister-in-law lives in Clearwater. After a problem laden and horrendous trip, she finally got home, only to be evacuated from there too. She packed up her two cats and headed for her parents house in Winter Haven and ended up in the middle of the storm there. They lost power for two days.

When we arrived in Miami for our flight back to Indianapolis, the plane broke and they had to “find” a different one for us. The following day, back in Indiana, I went to the dentist to learn that my tooth had abscessed and I had to have a root canal.

Last night we had a huge thunderstorm. Our house was hit by lightning – not once, but TWICE! We were unplugging things, but not fast enough. We lost three TV’s and a large satellite dish. The first hit, which sounded like a gunshot in the house, took one large TV and the satellite dish, and the second hit got two more TV’s. Again, the sound was horribly frightening.

Please do me a favor and tell Robert that we did not mean to anger or offend him and we’re sorry if we did. His photo did turn out good, so he sat very nicely for me. Would he like it back?

Yours sincerely,

Cindy Lye


Hundreds of letters have been sent to the Museum by visitors who beg Robert’s forgiveness and ask him to remove his curse

As for me, well, Robert and I were introduced several days ago and so far I’ve suffered no ill effects. But then, I’m not taking any chances. Like the cats, I choose to believe.

943 Comments on “The Curse Of Robert The Doll

  1. Dear Robert, I was not aware that there was a curse that went along with your pictures. I just wanted to apologize and say that I didn’t mean to offend you on any way.
    From Ariana

  2. I’m sorry for reading this article, and coming across your picture Robert!

  3. sorry Robert for reading about you online and seeing your pictures online without your permission.please forgive me.v a



  5. dear robert me and my friend jordan were curious about you and wanted to do some research about you. we are truly sorry

  6. Dear Robert, I am sorry for looking at your picture online, please forgive me.

  7. Robert I am so sorry for looking at your photo without permission I did not mean to offend you I was simply curious about your story

    Forgive me please

    Yours Truly
    Aysha Ahmed- Clarke

  8. I merely researched on the legend of the cursed dolls, following the film Child’s Play that was the basis of inspiration, and I apologize for looking at your pictures without permission. Please spare me the curse. Gracias.

  9. Hi Robert,

    I looked at your picture by accident online a few weeks ago. I have had some bad luck since then. Some small and some big. I am so sorry for looking at your picture without permission. I truly only have the utmost respect for you. I ask for your forgiveness and I assure you I am treating the curse with seriousness. Please please forgive me. I believe that you deserve respect from everyone.

  10. Dear Robert,
    I was just curious about you and your story.
    I hope I haven’t upset or offend you in any manner.
    Forgive me, please.

    Stephanie Christian

  11. Dear Robert,I
    I Am Sorry for looking at videos and articles of you online.

    Sincere Apology
    From Juan Falcon

  12. dear robert: i apologize for looking at your pictures without your permission. please forgive me.

    • Dear Robert, I’m sorry for going online looking at photos of ur beautiful face and body I simply did not know the curse worked that strictly. I hope you may forgive me of the mistake I made,yours truly,Yazzlynn.

  13. Dear robert please forgive me for looking at your picture without permission .maria.

  14. Dear Robert
    I’m Sorry for looking at your pictures and videos on youtube without your permission
    I wasn’t aware about needing permission to look at picture of you.

    I’m sorry please forgive me

  15. Dear Robert

    I am deeply sorry for looking at your pictures on the internet I had no clue that was not aloud and no intention to disrespect you. Please do not curse me or my family and friends
    Yours sincerely Taj Dodds

  16. dear robert,

    please forgive me from looking at your pictures and reading your stories,please do not curse me and my family

    thank u

  17. Dear Robert,
    I am Very deeply sorry for looking you up on the internet and watching a video of you on YouTube without your permission. I was just curious and didn’t know that I needed permission to look up your photos and look you up on the internet and look you up on YouTube until now. I don’t want you to curse me and my family since I’m already in bad luck almost every week.
    Please forgive me. Please.
    Yours Truly, Dennis Marr

  18. Dear Robert,
    I deeply apologise for looking you up on the internet without your permission. I did not mean to disrespect you in any way. I was unaware that I needed your permission before looking at your picture. Forgive me. My respect and sincere apologies to you. Take care.

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