Popular history has it that Mickey Mouse was born from a drawing sketched on a napkin by Walt Disney during a train ride from New York to Los Angeles in 1928.
Disney's wife detested the mouse's original name "Mortimer" and suggested "Mickey."
Mickey Mouse became the biggest fictional character moneymaker in the world, bringing in over $5.8 billion annually.
A San Francisco toy collector, however, believes his small mouse figurine may turn the legend of Mickey on its ears.
With a red label on its chest that reads "Micky" and a patent label on the bottom of one foot that says "Pat. Aug. 17, 1926," the figure appears to have been produced two years before Walt Disney created Mickey Mouse.
History Detectives heads to California, New York and Pennsylvania to trace the ancestry of America's most famous mouse and shed light on the bare-knuckle business fights in the toy industry.
- Also in Emerging Modern America: 1890-1930 Tiffany Window What can this watercolor reveal about the unexpected world of one of America’s great artists?
- Also with Wes Cowan Mankato Spoon What does this delicate silver spoon have to do with the largest mass execution in American history?
- Also in Emerging Modern America: 1890-1930 Sears Home Might an Ohio couple's residence be a long-forgotten Sears home?
- Also in Emerging Modern America: 1890-1930 Rogue Book Who did this book of rogue characters belong to?
- Also with Wes Cowan Slave Songbook Are these tattered pages the earliest record of music created by slaves?
- Related Investigation Superman Sketch Is this a WWII sketch from the early days of this comic icon?
This is a place for opinions, comments, questions and discussion; a place where viewers of History Detectives can express their points of view and connect with others who value history. We ask that posters be polite and respectful of all opinions. History Detectives reserves the right to delete comments that don’t conform to this conduct. We will not respond to every post, but will do our best to answer specific questions, or address an error.