The Snuggle Pup Craze of the early 1920s

The Snuggle Pup Craze of the early 1920s

I feel a new obsession coming on. I saw something at Joe and Nancy Zawadowski’s home that completely enchanted me. A collection of “Snuggle Pups.” I must find one. Or three. Or six.

Joe showed me an article about the creator of the Snuggle Pups, Frank W. Hopkins. Mr. Hopkins was a cartoonist. His cartoons about “Scoop, the Cub Reporter” debuted in 1912 and were published in newspapers around the country. He started a business, “Hop Service Inc.,” which created “Sales Promotional Ideas.”

In 1922, Mr. Hopkins introduced the “Snuggle Pups,” which quickly gained popularity – they were certainly a successful “sales promotional idea” for the companies that used them as enticements to gain membership, circulation, and readership.

snuggle pups frank hopkins cast iron toy vintage
Crockery and Glass Journal, Vol. 94 (1922).

Modern Stationer Serving the Office Products Dealer, Volume 5 (1922).

The pups apparently were made in three different compositions. One was a kind of plaster, another was wood (apparently beloved by the flappers of the day), and most were made of “smelter metal” 1. The pups had hollow interiors, and their heads were removable. The pups could be used to store small items, hold pencils, or whatever else your imagination could conjure up. The pups were a huge craze in the United States and Canada for a few years in the 20s. They were introduced in 1922, and their enormous popularity seems to have largely faded by about 1926.

Mon, Apr 7, 1924 – 7 · The Tampa Times (Tampa, Florida, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

A search on newspapers.com revealed an astonishing array2 of promotions for the snuggle pups from about 1922 – 1925. It was quit a craze. There were snuggle pup promotions, contests, mazes, “frolics,” and dances. They were extremely popular!

There were eight in the Snuggle Pup family “Daddy Dumbbell” and “Mother Snuggle” and their six children: Vamp, Jazz, Lucky, Snuggle, Dumbbell and Cuddle. Vamp was the only girl; the others were boys. Joe has all but the elusive Mother Snuggle.

Top row L to R: Left to right: Lucky, Sweet Papa (Sweet Papa and Jazz are the same, but Jazz is blacker), Lucky-composition material, Vamp, Lucky-yellow color, unknown. Middle row: Lucky, Dumbell, unknown, Snuggle, Vamp, Cuddle, Jazz, Sneeze-composition material, Lucky-yellow color. Bottom row: unknown-mounted on Greenduck Co. match holder, Snuggle, Cuddle, Sweet Papa, unknown, Snuggle, unknown-maybe a worn Lucky. The four small dogs in front on the top row are ‘Bonzo’. There are many variations of this 1922 created British cartoon by George Studdy, including greeting cards, and figurines in every medium imaginable. The two armed bulldogs on each end of the top row are pencil holders made of pot metal. Joe is not aware of their origin.

snuggle pups hopkins old antique vintage collectible

Tue, May 20, 1924 – 13 · The Tampa Times (Tampa, Florida, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Mon, Jun 23, 1924 – 10 · The Marion Star (Marion, Marion, Ohio, United States of America) · Newspapers.com
Newspapers held contests for which Snuggle Pups were awarded, there were Snuggle Pup contests, mazes and puzzles, and Snuggle Pup movie promotions. There were Snuggle Pup dances, “frolics,” and events.

Wed, Feb 20, 1924 – Page 12 · The Evening Journal (Wilmington, New Castle, Delaware) · Newspapers.com

Fri, Apr 11, 1924 – 16 · The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Mon, May 5, 1924 – 10 · The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia, United States of America) · Newspapers.com
Wed, Apr 2, 1924 – 19 · The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Sun, Jul 27, 1924 – Page 9 · The Huntington Press (Huntington, Huntington, Indiana) · Newspapers.com

Wed, Apr 16, 1924 – 22 · The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Wed, Jan 9, 1924 – Page 16 · The Courier-Journal (Louisville, Jefferson, Kentucky, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Tue, Aug 5, 1924 – Page 1 · The Huntington Press (Huntington, Huntington, Indiana) · Newspapers.com
First graders in Georgia formed a “Snuggle Pup” club.

Fri, May 2, 1924 – 3 · The Atlanta Constitution (Atlanta, Fulton, Georgia, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Soda Fountains had “Snuggle Pup” refreshments.

Sun, Aug 17, 1924 – Page 1 · The Huntington Press (Huntington, Huntington, Indiana) · Newspapers.com

Eddie Cantor even composed and sang a song about the Snuggle Pups.   

 

 

 

Joe found the sheet music, and his friend, musician John Pugh, played, sang, and taped it for Joe. Sweet!

Stories were told about the Snuggle Pups. As the story goes, they were naughty pups. Each had its own distinctive personality.

Mon, Dec 3, 1923 – 4 · Courier-Post (Camden, Camden, New Jersey, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Thu, Jan 3, 1924 – Page 7 · Harrisburg Telegraph (Harrisburg, Dauphin, Pennsylvania, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Sat, Jan 5, 1924 – Page 14 · The Courier-Journal (Louisville, Jefferson, Kentucky, United States of America) · Newspapers.com
Tue, Feb 19, 1924 – Page 11 · The Evening Journal (Wilmington, New Castle, Delaware) · Newspapers.com
Sun, Aug 17, 1924 – Page 10 · The Huntington Press (Huntington, Huntington, Indiana) · Newspapers.com
Thu, Apr 10, 1924 – 15 · The Tampa Times (Tampa, Florida, United States of America) · Newspapers.com


Fri, Jan 16, 1925 – Page 20 · The Winnipeg Tribune (Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada) · Newspapers.com

Tue, Apr 29, 1924 – 11 · The Tampa Times (Tampa, Florida, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

 

Sat, Jun 16, 1923 – Page 11 · The Fort Wayne Sentinel (Fort Wayne, Allen, Indiana) · Newspapers.com

Wed, Dec 26, 1923 – Page 3 · Stevens Point Journal (Stevens Point, Portage, Wisconsin, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Fri, Jul 7, 1922 – 25 · Salt Lake Telegram (Salt Lake City, Utah, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

According to the St. Louis Star, wood Snuggle Pups were a frequent companion to “flappers” in Chicago – “thousands” carried them.

Mon, May 15, 1922 – Page 15 · The St. Louis Star and Times (St. Louis, St. Louis, Missouri) · Newspapers.com

 Thu, May 4, 1922 – 12 · The Honolulu Advertiser (Honolulu, Hawaii, United States of America) · Newspapers.com
And then, the Snuggle pup craze faded. There were two other snuggle pups that turned up in my research, however; one a hot dog delicacy and the other a ladies purse.

Fri, Oct 14, 1927 – Page 3 · El Paso Herald (El Paso, El Paso, Texas, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Tue, Jun 21, 1966 – 5 · The Manhattan Mercury (Manhattan, Riley, Kansas, United States of America) · Newspapers.com

Thu, Jun 23, 1927 – Page 10 · Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, Allegheny, Pennsylvania) · Newspapers.com

  1. Joe informed me that “[t]he majority of the Snuggle Pups were made of something called smelter metal, pot metal, or white metal. All names for the same thing, which is mostly zinc.”
  2. My search revealed over 1000 newspaper articles about Snuggle Pups. Some concerned a picnic delicacy of the 1960s involving hotdogs and stuffing mix, and others from the mid-late 1920s concerned a ladies purse that was made to look like a dog, called a “Snuggle Pup.” Most, however, involved the sweet Snuggle Pups with which we are concerned in this article.

Related Posts

How to Determine Whether a Pup Marked “Griswold” is Authentic or a Reproduction

How to Determine Whether a Pup Marked “Griswold” is Authentic or a Reproduction

I had the opportunity in September to spend some time with Joe and Nancy Zawadowski of Durham, North Carolina. Joe has a wide and interesting variety of things that he collects (including animal skulls), but I was particularly interested to see his collection of vintage and […]

Joe Zawadowski: Cast Iron Pup Collector, Turtle Champion, Wood Carver, Bog Hunter, Dog Judge, Skull Seeker

Joe Zawadowski: Cast Iron Pup Collector, Turtle Champion, Wood Carver, Bog Hunter, Dog Judge, Skull Seeker

Joe Zawadowski of Durham North Carolina is a very interesting fellow. I had wanted to go to see, learn, and write about Joe’s cast iron “pup” collection for quite some time, but the September 2018 visit that Linda and I made to Joe and Nancy’s […]



Leave a Reply


Send this to a friend