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The History of Teddy Bears

We all know and love the cuddly teddy bear. But did you know this beloved toy was actually invented in honor of President Theodore Roosevelt? On November 14, 1902, Roosevelt went on a hunting trip in Mississippi. One of the men in the hunting party, Holt Collier, managed to capture a black bear and tie it to a tree. The men in attendance suggested that Roosevelt shoot the bear, since he hadn’t yet captured one on the trip. Roosevelt refused to shoot the tied-up bear, believing it to be an unsportsmanlike act. News of his refusal was widely covered, and a political cartoonist named Clifford Berryman even satirized the event in The Washington Post. Morris Michtom and his wife Rose, who owned a candy shop and sometimes made stuffed toys, saw the cartoon and decided to create a stuffed toy bear in honor of the president who refused to shoot a bear, calling it “Teddy’s Bear.” The teddy bear exploded in popularity and still remains one of the most popular toys today.

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