The history of Laughing Sal, an animatronic funhouse lure

Have you met Laughing Sal before? If you have, you'll surely remember her wicked laugh, gap-toothed grin, and uncanny electronic motions. Laughing Sal, also referred to as "Laffing Sal, Laffin' Sal, Sally, ect." was originally made in the 1920s and 30s by the Philadelphia Toboggan Company (PTC) of Germantown, Pennsylvania. Sal was built for the purpose of luring people into funhouses and dark attractions at amusement parks and carnivals throughout the United States. Sal is one of the first animated amusement park characters and considered a precursor of the animatronic characters from all around the world, including Disney parks' Audio-Animatronic figures. I've loved the uncanny, antique charm of Laughing Sal since I was a kid. If I see a Laughing Sal at a carnival, I'll undoubtedly be lured over by her sexy missing tooth and nightmarish laughter.

From Wikipedia on the construction of Laughing Sal:

"The figure stood 6 feet, 10 inches (2.0 m) high, including a 12-inch (30 cm) pedestal. It was made of papier-mâché, consisting of seven layers of pressed card stock with horse-hair strengthener, mounted over steel coils and frame. It did not come with a hat — hats were added by the purchaser — but wore an artificial wig and was missing an upper incisor tooth.[3] The head, arms, hands and legs were detachable and were held together with fabric, staples, pins, nails, nuts and bolts. When activated, the figure waved its arms and leaned forward and backward. A record player concealed in its pedestal played a stack of 78 RPM phonograph records of a woman laughing. When the records finished, an attraction operator re-stacked and restarted them. A woman named Tanya Garth performed the laugh." 

There isn't a complete list of the Laughing Sals left in existence, but here is a list of some known Laughing Sal locations on Wikipedia:

[image: Todd Lappin, CC BY-NC 2.0, Modified]