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Teddy Bears Made From Seed Corn Sacks
"We've had tremendous interest from families who have fond memories of the days of cloth seed corn sacks," says Lloyd Mitchell, Peru, Ill., who's doing a booming business selling "bears" made out of genuine antique cloth seed corn sacks, complete with colorful company logos in plain sight.
Mitchell started selling the bears two years ago. It was a logical extension of his hobby of collecting corn-related memorabilia. He serves as vice president of the Corn Items Collectors Association (613 North Long St., Shelbyville, Ill. 62565), an organization of mostly farmers who collect virtually any type of item related to corn from machinery to sacks to knick knacks.
The seed corn bears are about 18 in. long and stuffed with a washable poly fill material. They're made out of sacks from a variety of companies or you can custom-order a bear made out of a sack from a particular company.
"My husband sold Pioneer seed corn and I got to deliver a lot of it so I ordered each of my granddaughters a Pioneer bear to re-member their grandfather by," says Eloise Alton, secretary of Corn Items Collectors.
Mitchell, who has an extensive collection of seed corn sacks, says that even though seed corn companies stopped using the sacks in the 1950's, they're still relatively easy to find on farms across America. "It's amazing how many farmers saved the sacks. They're stuffed away in boxes or up in the corner of the barn. We find them at sales and a growing number of collectors are trading them back and forth," he says.
The sack bears sell for $30. A more collectable version, with the seed corn sack tag still attached that details the variety that the sack contained, sells for $35.
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Mid-State Bears, Box 542, Ladd, Ill. 61329 (ph 815 894-3385 or 223-8935).

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1991 - Volume #15, Issue #6