The History Center of Olmsted County, located in Rochester, Minnesota, launched the competition on October 16 to showcase parts of their collection that don't normally get attention.
The premise is simple. Each day, between October 16 and 24, a photo of a new creepy doll or figurine was posted on the museum's Facebook page. Participants voted by liking the photos of the dolls that they found the creepiest. The top three winners, to be announced Monday, will be on display, said Dan Nowakowski, the museum's curator.
And the dolls, a total of nine, are creepy. You can see for yourself.
This one, donated to the museum back in the 1950s, had been hand-painted. But the paint chipped over time. The effect is, well, terrifying.
Nowakowski said this one was the "best looking out of all of them." It also looks like it's plotting your murder.
Of course, the dolls weren't meant to be creepy. Nowakowski said many of the dolls are more than 100 years old, and time has taken its toll. Some of the materials have deteriorated, the paint has chipped off or they've just been worn out from being played with.
But even he admits, the dolls and figurines look scary now.
"I think it's the eyes, really," he said. "They're very lifelike and it kind of just gives you that creepy feel like something's watching you."
It's a horror movie in the making.
The response has been so popular and widespread — even garnering comments in other languages — that the museum has plans to do something similar next year.
Though museum officials have a year to plan, Nowakowski said the museum is considering a creepy mask competition, which sounds both totally cool and totally horrifying.