Teddy Bears at Amazon
- Amazon have a huge range of teddies at great prices, which are delivered free with free super saver delivery. They have everything from a Steiff Fynn teddy bear to a Tatty Teddy Me to You bear, a Gund Marmalade Bear and even a make your own teddy bear kit, together with other plush toys such as cats, squirrels and monkeys.
The History of the Teddy Bear
The teddy bear was invented in both Germany and the United States of America pretty much simultateously in around 1902. Here's what happened in each country at around this time:
- The US Teddy Bear
The US teddy bear was invented by Morris Michtom, in 1902.
In November 1902, the then US president, Theordore Roosevelt went out on a hunting trip in Mississippi. He very much enjoyed big game hunting but on this particular day things were going badly and he couldn't find anything to shoot. The president's men, trying to keep him happy, managed to capture a black bear and tied it to a tree ready for the president to shoot.
Upon seeing the hapless bear all tied up waiting to be killed, Roosevelt thought this was very unsporting and ordered that it be set free. A newspaper political cartoonist, Clifford Berryman, drew a cartoon entitled "Drawing The Line in Mississippi" which drew parallels between Roosevelt letting the bear go and an ongoing political border dispute that he was dealing with. The cartoon depicted a cute, trembling baby bear staring at Roosevelt, who was walking away, rifle in hand.
Morris Michtom, an enterprising owner of a toy shop in Brooklyn, got his wife to make two stuffed bears like the one in the cartoon, and displayed them in his shop window, together with a copy of the cartoon. To his astonishment, he was overwhelmed with customers wishing to purchase the bear. He asked and received permission from Theodore Roosevelt to call them "Teddy's Bears".
- The German Teddy Bear
There can be no disputing that the name "Teddy Bear" came directly from Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt. However, during 1902 in Germany, the Steiff Company manufactured their first stuffed, jointed and upright bears, created by the company's founder, Margarete Steiff. Steiff had produced other soft animals prior to this time including four legged standing bears. However, Margarete's nephew, Richard Steiff, had provided her with drawings he had made of bears standing upright, that he had seen performing at a Circus in the US, and Margarete based her designs on these drawings.
The bears Steiff created were introduced at a trade fair in Leipzig in 1903 and were seen by an American buyer who was familiar with the popularity of "Teddy's Bear". He imported approximately 12,000 Steiff bears into the US and had no difficultly selling any of them.