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Stuffed Animals

Stuffed animals date back to ancient Egypt, as ancient hieroglyphics show stuffed animals that represent real animals in rituals. The first toy stuffed animals appeared in the 1830s. These toys were usually homemade, using cloth to cover the outside and straw as stuffing.

The first manufactured stuffed animals were made by the Steiff company, founded in 1880 in Giengen, Germany. Margaret Steiff, founder of the company, made a small stuffed elephant from a pattern and sold it as a pincushion. The elephant, however, became popular as a children's toy. By 1892, the Steiff company offered a variety of stuffed animals, including monkeys, donkeys, horses, camels, pigs, mice, dogs, cats, rabbits, and giraffes. In 1902, Steiff manufactured its first teddy bears.

Other manufacturers began to make stuffed animals and the toys became popular with children. Prior to World War II, stuffed animals were covered with cloth or mohair and were stuffed with straw or wool. After World War II, lower-cost synthetic fibers became available. Stuffed animals were then made of synthetic materials and stuffed with synthetic fiber fill. Today, collector's editions of antique stuffed animals are made with jointed limbs and firm filling, similar to early stuffed animals.


Quick Facts

  • Stuffed animals became popular in America with the invention of the teddy bear, named after President Theodore "Teddy" Roosevelt. President Roosevelt hated the name Teddy but gave permission for its use
  • Collectors often collect stuffed animals by brand or artist rather than by type. Steiff, Merrythought, Hermann, and other artist-made animals command the highest prices
  • Beanie Babies, manufactured by Ty Toys, became a collectible craze in the '90s. Once purchased as an investment, Beanie Babies are only worth a fraction of their original prices today

Recommended Items at Auction

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Peanuts x Macy's Plush, Millennium Snoopy
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Peanuts x Macy's Plush, Millennium Snoopy
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Est: $10- $200
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Steiff Stuffed Animal, Cosy Camel
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
Steiff Stuffed Animal, Cosy Camel
by Lion and Unicorn
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4pc Steiff Stuffed Penguins
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
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Steiff Stuffed Animal Plush Toy, Lumpi the Dog
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
Steiff Stuffed Animal Plush Toy, Lumpi the Dog
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Yottoy Saks Fifth Avenue Yeti Plush
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
Yottoy Saks Fifth Avenue Yeti Plush
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
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Vintage Steiff Mohair Dog Hand Puppet with Straw Stuffed Head, Original Ear Tag
Jul 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Vintage Steiff Mohair Dog Hand Puppet with Straw Stuffed Head, Original Ear Tag
by Denise Ryan Auction Co.
Est: $25- $500
$101 Bid
THREE STUFFED ANIMALS.
Jul 26, 10:00 AM EDT
THREE STUFFED ANIMALS.
by Amelia Jeffers
Est: $100- $200
$501 Bid
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gr. Schäferhund, Plüschtier, "Plüti" Nova, Sonneberg, L-ca. 75 cm,
Aug 03, 1:45 PM CEST
gr. Schäferhund, Plüschtier, "Plüti" Nova, Sonneberg, L-ca. 75 cm,
by Auktionshalle Cuxhaven
Est: €0- €0
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Set of VanderBear All Spruced Up Stuffed Bears
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
Set of VanderBear All Spruced Up Stuffed Bears
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
Group of 15 My Little Pony Plushies
Aug 03, 9:00 AM CDT
Group of 15 My Little Pony Plushies
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Est: $30- $300
$150 Bids
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Christmas Stuffed Animals & The polar Express Santa Claus
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
Christmas Stuffed Animals & The polar Express Santa Claus
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
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3pc Stuffed Penguin Animal Toys
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
3pc Stuffed Penguin Animal Toys
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
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5pc Assortment of Charming Stuffed Rabbits
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
5pc Assortment of Charming Stuffed Rabbits
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
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5pc Assorted Christmas Stuffed Animals
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
5pc Assorted Christmas Stuffed Animals
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
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5pc Assortment of Christmas Stuffed Penguins
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
5pc Assortment of Christmas Stuffed Penguins
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
Group of 14 My Little Pony Plushies
Aug 03, 9:00 AM CDT
Group of 14 My Little Pony Plushies
by Matthew Bullock Auctioneers
Est: $30- $300
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Vintage Stuffed Polar Bear with Glass Eyes
Jul 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Vintage Stuffed Polar Bear with Glass Eyes
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Est: $25- $500
$100 Bids
Lot of 2 Vintage Bears Glass under Fuzz
Jul 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Lot of 2 Vintage Bears Glass under Fuzz
by Denise Ryan Auction Co.
Est: $25- $500
$100 Bids
Vintage Pair Miniature Jointed Boyds Fuzzy Bears Bride & Groom
Jul 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Vintage Pair Miniature Jointed Boyds Fuzzy Bears Bride & Groom
by Denise Ryan Auction Co.
Est: $25- $500
$100 Bids
Vintage Bearington Collection Miniature Jointed Little Girl Teddy Bear with Hand Knit Sweater
Jul 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Vintage Bearington Collection Miniature Jointed Little Girl Teddy Bear with Hand Knit Sweater
by Denise Ryan Auction Co.
Est: $25- $500
$100 Bids
Lot of 2 Vintage Jointed Miniature Teddy Bears, Gund & Other
Jul 29, 11:00 AM EDT
Lot of 2 Vintage Jointed Miniature Teddy Bears, Gund & Other
by Denise Ryan Auction Co.
Est: $25- $500
$100 Bids
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Pair of Vintage Rabbit Ears Velveteen Rabbit Plushies
Jul 25, 2:00 PM EDT
Pair of Vintage Rabbit Ears Velveteen Rabbit Plushies
by Lion and Unicorn
Est: $10- $200
$100 Bids
Three Early Stuffed Animals.
Aug 03, 10:00 AM EDT
Three Early Stuffed Animals.
by Casco Bay Auctions
Est: $200- $300
$1000 Bids
Rupfentier als Nilpferd
Aug 30, 10:00 AM CEST
Rupfentier als Nilpferd
by Auktionshaus Mehlis GmbH
Est: €0- €0
€3000 Bids

Sellers Who Sell Stuffed Animals


Lion and Unicorn

Lion and Unicorn

Denise Ryan Auction Co.

Denise Ryan Auction Co.

Matthew Bullock Auctioneers

Matthew Bullock Auctioneers

Auktionshaus Mehlis GmbH

Auktionshaus Mehlis GmbH