Waldemar Nilsson (1904 - 1977)



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Waldemar Nilsson Biography & Family History

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Bakersfield, Kern County, California

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1904 - In the year that Waldemar Nilsson was born, the "Teddy's Bear" was first produced. After seeing a political cartoon of President Teddy Roosevelt refusing to kill a clubbed and tied up bear, Jewish Russian immigrant Morris Michtom - who owned a candy shop and sold stuffed animals that he and his wife made at night at the store - made a "Teddy's Bear" and put it in his shop's window. The stuffed bears were an immediate success and Michtom and his wife went on to found the Ideal Novelty and Toy Co.

1913 - Waldemar was just 9 years old when ratified in February the 16th Amendment, establishing a Federal income tax, became law. Previously, customs duties (tariffs) and excise taxes were the primary sources of federal revenue. With the passage of the 16th Amendment, incomes of couples exceeding $4,000, as well as those of single persons earning $3,000 or more, were subject to a 1% Federal tax (that would be about $98,000 and $74,000 now). Rates rose to 7% for incomes over half a million dollars. Less than 1% of the population was subject to income tax.

1917 - When he was only 13 years old, "I Want You" became famous. James Montgomery Flagg's poster, featuring Uncle Sam and based on a 1914 British poster, attracted thousands of U.S. recruits to WWI duty. Over 4 million posters were printed in 1917 and 1918.

1941 - He was 37 years old when on June 25th, President Roosevelt signed Executive Order 8802, prohibiting racial discrimination in the defense industry. EO 8802 was the first federal action to prohibit employment discrimination - without prejudice as to "race, creed, color, or national origin" - in the U.S. Civil Rights groups had planned a march on Washington D.C. to protest for equal rights but with the signing of the Order, they canceled the March.

1977 - In the year of Waldemar Nilsson's passing, on January 21st, President Carter pardoned "draft dodgers" - men who avoided the draft during the Vietnam War. He fulfilled a campaign promise with the pardon. But it only applied to civilian evaders - the estimated 500,000 to 1 million active-duty personnel who went AWOL were not included.

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Waldemar Nilsson died in August 1977 at 73 years old. There is no known cause of death. He was born on June 14, 1904. There is no information about Waldemar's family or relationships. We know that Waldemar Nilsson had been residing in Bakersfield, Kern County, California.


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