Antique Early Mohair Teddy Bear JointedShoe Button Eye Cutest Face EVER
Oh my goodness!!! Be still my beating heart is what I thought when I first saw this darling bear. His face is so sweet and he has loads of personality indeed! This bear was made around 1910, possibly earlier. He is appropriately stuffed with wood wool i.e, excelsior that was used during this period, not kapok which was predominately used after 1914. He has black shoe button eyes and is fashioned from mohair which is cloth made from the fleece of an Angora goat.
Do you know how the name Teddy Bear originated and why? In November 1902 President "Teddy" Roosevelt took a trip to Mississippi as he was there to settle a border dispute. While he was there he took part in a hunting expedition but had no luck finding a bear. The members of his presidential hunting party actually caught a motherless cub. They tied the poor little cub to a tree and asked the President to shoot it as a trophy of his visit. Thank goodness the President refused considering it to be unsportsmanlike. This incident caused Clifford K. Berryman to draw a cartoon entitled, "Drawing The Line in Mississippi", and later appeared in the Washington Post on November 16, 1902. See image 16. This cartoon brought so much attention that a shopkeeper, Morris Michtom in Brooklyn New York, decided to display two toy bears in the window of his stationery and novelty store along with the cartoon. The bears had been made by his wife from black plush stuffed excelsior and finished with black button eyes. The popularity of the Teddy Bear was born! This later became "The Ideal Toy Company".
Around the same time, Richard Steiff from Germany was searching for new toy ideas and happened to visit a circus here in America. Among the performing animals he saw a troupe of bears that sparked his imagination and saw the possibility of making a jointed bear. It is so interesting how history has such an impact on everything we collect and cherish.
This little guy is absolutely wonderful and his little face speaks for itself. His paws are made from felt which again indicates his early origin but do show signs of wear. There is wood excelsior showing through on both front paws, see images 4 & 5 and the left paw looks like it was hand stitched at some point. The material used for the pads on his feet is made of cotton. This was hand ~ stitched onto the foot and is securely held in place.
There are also signs of slight wear and loss to the mohair fabric that can be seen on the back of his head, the left arm, on the right leg, on his chin, face and ears. Please see images, 2, 3 & 8. The good news is about 90% of the mohair is intact! His mouth and nose have been hand ~ stitched up in chocolate brown thread. The original color was a rich Carmel as shown in image 10 near the top of his legs. He now has a light tan hue but still looks great for his age!
The bear does have a pronounced snout and also a whisper of a humpback form. His head actually turns so you can position him to your liking and did I mention he is jointed too. This darling piece came from my friends bear collection and she only collected the best! He now needs a new home where he can be loved and enjoyed! If you would like to adopt him he promises to behave as long as he has center stage among your other bears because he is that good! :)
My friend always kept bay leaves tucked in the joints of her bears to ward off any pesky moths. I will give you a little baggie full of these fresh leaves so you can use them if you choose to. Also included in this purchase is a primitive hand ~ fashioned flag! I could not resist designing this piece as it looks perfect tucked in his arm for a touch of patriotic whimsy! The last item that comes with this purchase is a old little wool sweater so you can dress this bear if you wish to. The color resembles a rich buttermilk but does have a couple small holes underneath the left arm. Four tiny Mother of Pear Buttons adorn the front and there is a drawstring near the neck. The sweater is marked, "Forest Mills", size 3. Sweet!!! See image 12 & 14. Enjoy!
He proudly stands 15" Tall, 11" Tall in a sitting position, 4 1/2" across his tummy, 6 1/2" from shoulder to shoulder & 5" from edge of ear to ear.
~Freight (Standard Mail) included, however Insurance is optional and can be purchased @ checkout ~ within the continental U.S.