Pinocchio For Christmas


I have never been much of a fan of Disney animated cartoons, having been much more taken with the Warner Brothers characters Daffy Duck and Bugs Bunny, than the goody two shoes Mickey Mouse and the angry and incomprehensible Donald Duck. However, give me a Disney character in a photobooth and it is all love from me.

Pinocchio is the creation of Italian children’s author Carlo Collodi, whose wooden boy was a lot less likeable than the Disneyfied version. I can find no reference to Disney buying the rights to use the story, so assume that no royalties were paid to the original creator or his descendants. In such circumstances was the Disney empire founded.

This photo was taken on December 28th in the same year the animated film was released, 1940. Pictured is a very handsome young man clutching his licensed character doll, which given the date of the photo, must have been a prized Christmas gift.

The photo, an enlargement of a  smaller photobooth image, measures 80 x 111 mm. It has been lightly hand coloured, with both the Pinocchio’s and the child’s cheeks highlighted with a lovely rose red.

Below is a scan of the back of the photo. Once again I am asking for help to decipher handwriting. Try as I might, I cannot work out what the first word is. I suspect it is either the name of the sitter or of the place where the photo was taken, possibly even the name of a store? I have added two scans with different toning, neither of which are very clear but they are the best results I could get from my aging scanner. The date December 28, 1940 is clear. Below that I think it says 3 years but I cannot make out the following word, nor understand why the year 1940 is written again. Any offers of help are greatly appreciated in the comments section. Thanks!


photoboothPinnochio 1

  1. John said:

    Well, the first part looks like a name beginning with the letter B. I’ve looked at it for several moments without locking on to a specific name. Handsome lad isn’t he. 👍🏻

    Liked by 1 person

    • Have you left WP, John? I had to approve your comment for the first time.

      I gave the photo to my mum to decipher. She is normally great at old handwriting. She thought it might be Billie, but I’m not convinced.


    • Hi Ms Tattered, I think you may be right that it is an exclusive category. Going to see yours now. . .


  2. Christmas again already? And I haven’t done any shopping. Wherever did the Spanish summer go?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That’s quite a photo. During the war too. I wonder what country this was taken in?

    Liked by 1 person

    • The good old USA. 😊. I hadn’t thought about it being during the war. But didn’t the USA wait till after Pearl Harbour to get involved. So, late 1941? But maybe the war in Europe had already started to affect things in America?


    • I replied to this but now it is showing I didn’t. The weirdness of WordPress. Bertie is a good suggestion, thank you!


    • My mum thought the same, Dawn. It would be very sad and strange if he died just days after the photo was taken. There wasn’t much of 1940 left after the 28th of December.

      Liked by 1 person

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