, originally known as Leprocauns and also known as Dam dolls, Gonks, Wishniks, Treasure Trolls, and Norfins, became one of America's biggest toy fads from the autumn of 1963 through 1965.
Trolls became fads again in brief periods throughout the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s, with as many as ten different manufacturers (such as Russ Berrie, Jakks Pacific, Applause, Hasbro, Mattel, Nyform, Trollkins and Ace Novelty) creating them.
Originally created in 1959 by Danish fisherman and woodcutter Thomas Dam, the dolls became popular in several European countries during the early 1960s, shortly before they were introduced in the United States. Dam, a poor woodcutter, could not afford a Christmas gift for his young daughter Lila and carved the doll from his imagination. When other children in the Danish town of Gjøl saw the Troll Doll, they wanted one as well and Dam began selling them locally. The originals, also called "Dam Dolls", were of the highest quality, featuring sheep wool hair and glass eyes. Their sudden popularity, along with an error in the copyright notice of Thomas Dam's original product, resulted in cheaper imitations and knock-offs which flooded the American and North American shelves.