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    Macy's Thanksgiving Parade Balloons Since 1927

    The Macy's Thanksgiving Parade has been a tradition of Thankgiving for decades. It started out as a way for the employees of Macy's to say thank you to New York. Macy's started using balloons in their parade in 1927 and it has been tradition since. Here's part 1 featuring balloons from 1927 to 1968.


    "The Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade dates as far back as the 1920's, when Macy's employees, many of whom were immigrants, began this tradition in an attempt to connect with American culture by celebrating Thanksgiving."

    Balloon years, when given, come from various sources, including Wikipedia and Macy's website itself. Some have no name or date and a guess was made as to what year they may have appeared.

    This is by no means comprehensive as there are most likely many balloons, especially early on that are not included. / Via

    1927 Felix the Cat

    Macy's used to release the balloons after the parade was over. Tickets were attached with a reward of $100 for the return of the balloons. That was a fairly nice reward. As an example, a cost around that time period, for a new stove could range from $30 to $60. A nice radio could cost $15 or a new ice box about $30.


    Unknown Father Knickerbocker

    Father Knickerbocker is a pen named used by Washington Irving, who wrote the first history of New York and was Manhattan's first best seller. The then 26-year-old, used the name Diedrich Knickerbocker, "Diedrich" meaning "father" in Dutch, and a note by Irving in the book, indicating Knickerbocker meant to nod or doze over books. / Via

    Unknown Alligator

    Facts and tidbits used are also from various sources, a special thanks to David Tarkington and his blog which has some nice bits of trivia.

    1932 A...turkey? / Via http://human%20resources

    Unknown Hippo

    1934 Mickey Mouse

    1935 The Marx Brothers

    These particular ones are from 2004. / Via http://Mental_Floss

    1937 The Nantucket Sea Monster / Via

    1937 Pinocchio!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen / Via

    1937 Christmas Stocking / Via

    1938 Acrobats / Via

    1939 Santa / Via http://Retroist

    1939 Superman

    1940 Eddie Cantor

    Boardwalk Empire fans know Eddie Cantor as a character on the show. But in case you didn't know, he was based on a real person.


    Unknown Ferdinand the Bull

    No parade was held during the years 1942-1944 because of war efforts and a shortage of rubber and helium. / Via

    1945 Jack-o-Lantern / Via http://%20Macy's,%20Inc.%20Photo%20Gallery

    1945 Harold the Clown


    1946 Harold the Baseball Player

    Pilgrim 1946


    1947 Artie The Pirate


    1947 Artie the Gnome

    Unknown Clown II / Via

    1947 Harold the Police Officer


    1948 Harold the Fireman!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen / Via

    1949 Toy Soldier


    1951 Daschund/Lucky Pup


    1951 Mighty Mouse / Via

    1951 Flying Fish V.2

    1957 Popeye

    Numerous stories report that during a rain storm, Popeye's hat filled with water. It eventually tipped over onto parade watchers. Merry Christmas!!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen / Via

    1960 Happy Dragon

    c. 1973


    Also a Happy Dragon, but no date given. Obviously much older based on the cars.!/img/httpImage/image.jpg_gen / Via

    Unknown Toy Soldier / Via

    1961 Bullwinkle J. Moose

    Apparently the oldest balloon still in use. / Via

    1962 Donald Duck

    "Heavy rain filled the brim of Donald Duck’s hat in 1962, causing the character to tip over and dump 50 gallons of water on unamused onlookers."

    I'm thinking other onlookers were highly amused.


    1963 Sinclair Oil Dino the Dinosaur

    1964 Linus the Lionhearted

    1966 Smokey Bear / Via Flickr: 10131956@N00

    1966 Superman V.2

    1968 Aviator Snoopy

    Part 2, tomorrow. But no promises.