"My Teddy Bear" photo by André Nordbø (AndyNor) on Flickr (noncommercial use permitted with attribution / share alike).
Mississippi designated the teddy bear as the official state toy in 2002. President Theodore Roosevelt went to the Mississippi Delta to hunt black bear in 1902, where he refused to shoot an injured bear.
A political cartoon poked fun at the president over this incident. The owner of a New York City toy store saw the cartoon and asked the president's permission to use the name "Teddy's bears" on a small stuffed bear cub toy (and Teddy Roosevelt consented). "Teddy's bears" soon became just "Teddy bears" and all stuffed bear toys are now called teddy bears.