For sale is a 1950s SMOKEY THE BEAR PLUSH TOY from the Ideal Toy Corporation. This very distinctive toy with glass eyes and a rubber face has a creepy vibe. This is the kind of toy you get when its made to U.S. government specifications. The manufacturer tag is present and reads “Smokey – Official License Authorized by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (18 U.S.C. 711) – Prevent Fire Fires – Made by Ideal Toy Corp.” This collectible stuffed animal is in very good condition. The toy has some minor staining and one side of the “SMOKEY” plastic belt buckle has a broken clip. There is a crank on his back for a sound making mechanism but it no longer functions. The mechanism when working would say the following poem: “I’m Smokey The Bear, I’m Smokey The Bear. Running And Looking For Smoke In The Air. I Want To Tell All The People And Ask Them Take Care – Please Prevent Forest Fires Says Smokey The Bear.” The bear is about 16 inches long by about 10 inches wide. A first rate collectible toy.
The Smokey Bear ad campaign is the longest-running public service announcement campaign in United States history. Smokey Bear is a U.S. Forest Service advertising icon. The campaign started in 1944 featuring Smokey and the slogan “Smokey Says – Care Will Prevent 9 out of 10 Forest Fires”. In 1947, the slogan changed to “Remember… Only YOU Can Prevent Forest Fires”. In 2001, the message was officially updated to “Only You Can Prevent Wildfires” in response to a massive outbreak of wildfires in natural areas other than forests. The government also wanted to clarify that Smokey was promoting the prevention of unplanned outdoor fires, and that Smokey was not adverse to prescribed burns. Good to know.
Smokey Bear’s name and image is protected by U.S legislation, the Smokey Bear Act of 1952 (16 United States Code 580; previously codified 18 U.S.C. 711). As you can see on the tag on the toy for sale. Woody or Buzz Light Year action figures are not authorized by Congress. Enough said.