Smokey Bear Museum And Grave
- Mon 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Tue 9:00 am - 5:00 pm Closed now
- Wed 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Thu 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Fri 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Sat 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Sun 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
"Hotfoot" was a badly burned black bear cub found in 1950 by firefighters after a devastating blaze in New Mexico's Lincoln National Forest. When the cub healed, he was rechristened Smokey Bear, and he came to personify the advertising character created during World War II to dissuade campers from carelessly destroying the war effort's lumber supply.
Smokey moved to Washington, DC, and took up residence at the National Zoo alongside fellow celebrity Ham, the Astrochimp. Millions paid their respects over the years. Smokey was so popular, he had his own ZIP code.
Smokey died during the Bicentennial year, and was taken home and buried under dark of night on Nov. 9, 1976, on the grounds of the Smoky Bear Museum. A tree planted next to the spot is nourished, as in some way are all trees, by the great bear himself.
The nearby Smokey Bear Restaurant features Smokey Bear Burgers.