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Story of Smokey

Explore Smokey Bear’s History

Smokey Bear leans on his mailbox and reads a letter.

Since 1944, Smokey’s been working hard to inspire Americans to prevent wildfires. Follow his history here through memorabilia and print, radio and TV messages.

1980: Junior Forest Ranger Handbook
Junior Forest Ranger
1980: Poster
A poster depicts Smokey Bear and other forest animals. It reads "remember you're among friends."
1980: You're Among Friends
1980: Painted Matches
1980: Painted Matches
1980:  Reasoning Radio Commercial
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1981: City Tree
1982: Poster
Think Poster
1983: Poster
Think Before You Strike
1983: Happy 40th Birthday
1983: Man Discovered Fire
1983: Ray Charles
1984: Poster
A red poster featuring Smokey reads "close the book on forest fires."
1984: Poster
A poster depicting Smokey holding a cake for his 40th anniversary. The poster reads "Make Smokey's birthday wish come true."
1985: Poster
A poster featuring Smokey Bear reads "Only You!"
1985: Being Careless with Fire...
1985: Spock Radio Commercial
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1985: Happy Birthday Animals Radio Commercial
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1985: The Grateful Dead Radio Commercial
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1985: Cheech and Chong Radio Commercial
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1985: B.B. King Radio Commercial
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1987: Poster
A poster depicting Smokey using binoculars to inspect a forest fire. It reads "only you can prevent forest fires."
1987: Barbara Mandrell Radio Commercial
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1988: We've Always Wondered...
1989: Do Trees Think?