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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.

1968: U.S. & State Forest Services Stamp
A poster is broken up into four squares. The first depicts Smokey and reads "Only you can prevent wildfires." The second depicts a match and reads "Use fire carefully." The third depicts Smokey tipping his hat and reads "thanks folks, for being careful." The fourth image depicts two boys playing baseball and reads "Smokey's friends don't play with matches."