A very good friend of mine gave me this toy. It was his favorite, but as he neared the end of his life, he wanted me to have it as he knew I was an avid Disney collector. That way, it would continue to be loved and cherished just as it was with him for so many years. Some things in my collection have a higher retail value, but few have a higher sentimental value!
There are other versions of this that I have seen, notably Goofy, but I only have Mickey:
What makes this little toy so fun is the corded legs. It harkens back to the old squash and stretch days when Mickey Mouse, and pretty much every cartoon character, had rubber hose appendages. I have another piece featuring Mickey with similar limbs in the shape of a WDW Keychain.
One of the features of this toy is that Mickey’s head can swivel to the left and to the right. The movement is slight but noticeable.
The main feature of the toy is that the wheels actually turn, and when the front one revolves, it moves Mickey’s legs to make it appear that he is peddling the tricycle.
Trademarks aplenty! Walt Disney Productions is used but we also find other markings on the front wheel. Gabriel Industries Inc. is the manufacturer and Hong Kong the place of manufacture.
Gabriel Industries Inc. doesn’t appear to be in business any longer. But I did find an interesting excerpt from the New York Times dated December of 1981 (Section 3, Page 21). Apparently a main article had been written on the 6th that referenced some information about Gabriel, but it contained errors. So the President of the company, Benjamin Ordover, wrote to the Editor on the 10th with these corrections:
“First, Gabriel Industries is CBS’s toy division. There is no other toy subsidiary. Gabriel Industries, as it is known in the toy business, makes toys and related products under four brand names: Child Guidance, Gabriel, Gym-Dandy and Wonder. Second, the chart identified Creative Playthings as this division’s major products. We have not made toys under this name for more than two years, with the exception of wooden backyard playground equipment. Our major products might better have included, among others, Erector sets, Othello and Busy Box.”
You know you screwed up when the actual President of a corporation takes time out of his busy schedule to correct you! Wow. Sucked to be that writer! Research man, research!