On Wednesday, July 10th, The other Arc Participants and I and Staff Members celebrated the creation (on July 10th, 1932, by songwriter, James Kennedy) of the famous children’s song, “The Teddy Bears’ Picnic” by bringing our stuffed not bears to The Arc. I brought my very favorite purple teddy bear that I named Lavender. (She was a gift from one of my favorite people at The Arc for doing such a great job with “The Arc Times” Newsletter.
The other Participants and I learned that Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt was the 26th President of the United States. He is the person responsible for giving the “teddy bear” his name.
On November 14th, 1902, Roosevelt was helping settle a border dispute between Mississippi and Louisiana. During his spare time he attended a bear hunt in Mississippi. During the hunt, Roosevelt came upon a wounded young bear and ordered the mercy killing of the animal. The Washington Post ran a editorial cartoon created by the political cartoonist Clifford K. Berryman that illustrated the event.
The cartoon was called “Drawing the Line in Mississippi” and depicted both state line dispute and the bear hunt. At first Berryman drew the bear as a fierce animal; the bear had just killed a hunting dog. Later, Berryman redrew the bear to make it a cuddly cub. The cartoon and the story it told became popular and within a year, the cartoon bear became a toy for children called the teddy bear. It was a “beary” good day.