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Teddy Bear Making
|The teddy bear did not make its entrance until late in 1902. As time went on, Teddy Bears continued to grow in popularity and their shape also evolved.The older generation of Teddy Bears has pointed muzzles, humped backs, and long limbs. Gradually, bear faces widened, humps began to disappear and their limbs grew short and stubby.|
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The name "Teddy Bear" comes from former United States President Theodore Roosevelt, whose nickname was "Teddy".
The name originated from an incident on a bear hunting trip in Mississippi in November 1902, most of the hunters except Roosevelt had already killed an animal. A group of his attendants tied an American Black Bear to a willow tree after a long exhausting chase with hounds. They called Roosevelt to the site and suggested that he should shoot it. He refused deeming it unsportsmanlike, but instructed that the bear be killed to put it out of its misery. This became the topic of a political cartoon by Clifford Berryman in The Washington Post on November 16, 1902. While the initial cartoon of an adult black bear lassoed by a handler and a disgusted Roosevelt had symbolic overtones, later issues of that and other Berryman cartoons made the bear smaller and cuter.
Composer John Bratton wrote "The Teddy Bear Two Step" which, with the addition of Jimmy Kennedy's lyrics, became the song "The Teddy Bears' Picnic".
For collectors very early Steiff bears, with their hump backs, long snouts, large tapered feet and elongated arms with curved paws, are the most sought-after.
For an easy way to trim those tiny muzzles, try using a men's ear and nose hair trimmer. Don't get the kind with a circular tip, they won't work well..
The world's first teddy bear museum was set up in Petersfield, Hampshire, England, in 1984. In 1990, a similar foundation was set up in Naples, Florida, United States. These were closed in 2006 and 2005 respectively, and the bears were sold in auctions, but there are today many teddy bear museums around the world.
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