A World War I-era scrapbook containing five full pages illustrated by a very young (age 16 or 17) Walt Disney is up for sale at Bonhams auction house in New York City. It is considered to be among the earliest Disney art in private hands.
The cover, drawn and twice autographed by Disney around the time of his enlistment in the Red Cross in 1918, features portraits of two men in uniform. The other sketches contain jokes about contemporary life in his hometown of Chicago and observations on the war itself , including two drawings of a “Trench Rat,” pre-dating Disney’s far more famous rodent creation by a good ten years.
Apparently the young Mr. Disney gave the scrapbook to a friend after the war, and it remained in the family until it was sold to a collector last year. Also up for auction is an autographed photo of Walt from around the same period:
For more information about the auction and the scrapbook itself, be sure to visit Bonhams website.
Images by Walt Disney and owned by Phil Sears Collectibles.