Top Ten Things You May Not Know About Minnie Mouse
1. Like her beau, Mickey Mouse, Minnie’s first appearance was in the 1928 short Plane Crazy.
2. While Minnie would go on to appear in 73 cartoons with Mickey and Pluto, she is the only member of the famed Fab 5 to never have headlined her own film.
3. In the comic strip story “The Gleam,” published in 1942, it was revealed that Minnie’s full name is Minerva Mouse. Walt Disney later admitted that Minnie was named after Minnie Cowles, the wife of Dr. John Cowles, who was an investor in one of Walt’s earliest animation ventures, Laugh- O-Gram studios.
4. Speaking of names, Minnie was a very popular name in the United States in the late 1800s. When the Social Security Administration began keeping track of baby names in 1880, Minnie was the fifth most popular name in the country. It remained a top 10 name until 1892, when it began to decline in popularity. Today the name doesn’t even appear in the top 1,000 names in the country, which definitely puts Minnie Mouse in a class by herself!
5. The first voice of Minnie Mouse was Marcellite Garner, originally from the Ink and Paint Department at the Disney Studio. She is currently voiced by Russi Taylor, who was married to Wayne Allwine, the third voice of Mickey Mouse, until he died on May 18, 2009. Interestingly, Taylor provided the voice for another Disney mouse, though admittedly one who wasn’t quite as famous. She played Nurse Mouse, the assistant to Doctor Mouse and a competent second-in-command in 1990’s The Rescuers Down Under.
6. Like Mickey, Minnie’s voice was sometimes provided by Walt Disney himself in the early days!
7. In addition to Minnie’s duties as editor of Minnie’s Cartoon Country Living magazine, she also quilts, paints, and gardens.
8. The year 1986 was declared “Minnie’s Year” throughout the Disney parks, giving Mickey’s sweetheart the recognition that she deserved.
9. Mickey and Minnie are sweethearts, but the big question is, are they married? While they’ve never been married onscreen, Walt Disney, in a 1933 interview with Film Pictorial magazine, said, “In private life, Mickey is married to Minnie… What it really amounts to is that Minnie is, for screen purposes, his leading lady.” So that settles the question, right? Not quite. Two years later in 1935, Walt told Louise Morgan in the News Chronicle “There’s no marriage in the land of make-believe. Mickey and Minnie must live happily ever after.”
10. Minnie’s marital status might be a mystery, but we do know that she has two nieces, Melody and Millicent. She has also had several pets, including Figaro, Fifi, and Frankie. Interestingly, one of her first pets was a familiar looking dog named Rover. That playful canine was soon renamed Pluto, and he went on to have quite a career of his own.