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Just found this in a attic I am doing an estate sale in soon . It may be nothing but a cloth child’s doll but at first I thought it may be an early Mickey Mouse but don’t think so . No marking s I can find so may be nothing . Any help on identification or age wouldn’t be greatly appreciated. Thank you, John
There were many patterns produced for stuffed animals that looked like Mickey Mouse but without permission from Walt Disney Productions could not be called "Mickey Mouse". Yours fits that description. Circa 1930s to present; can't be more specific.
I, too, did a lot of searching. The use of brown on the head, instead of all black, was a Mickey thing for a short while. The features are similar but the lack of hands, is significant. It seems more well-constructed than many carnival animals, but the eyes say "carnival toy"...just before they embraced the idea of making them look as cheaply made as they are! :)
I agree and I remember seeing these too - at the fair, or the carnival, though that would be in the 1960's. If memory serves - I think these were made in Japan. Is the body hard like it's filled with a sawdust type stuff?
If so, these were patterned after the very first Mickey and the steamboat (or similar, early 30's Mickey cartoon done by Disney himself) His name wasn't Mickey then - I think "Willy". Every once in a while the Cartoon stations would play these early cartoons, in the 60's. It's possible he is older - as Tom said, he could be 30's to 50's, but I doubt it. Look around Ebay and picclick for similar stuffies to get an idea of price.
Still collectible to those lovers of the Mouse! :)
I'm kind of related to Steamboat Willy, the real one, that is. His given name was William Heckmann, aka Willy or Steamboat Willy. His first born son was William Jr, aka Steamboat Bill. Senior owned Heckmann Steamship & Packet Co, Hermann, Mo. His 12th born daughter was my paternal grandmother. He had 14 kids, 8 sons and 6 daughters. 6 of his sons became riverboat captains. Sr. was 59 when he first married; wife was 23.
BTW, "Steamboat Willy" the mouse is misnamed because he is not driving a steamboat. A steamboat has 2 or more decks above the main deck. The wheel-house doesn't count. He's driving a packet, which is a 1 story boat. Packets were used to haul cargo, produce, animals, logs, freight, etc.