Disney pin collecting may seem like a relatively recent phenomenon, driven by the lucrative souvenirs-and-trinkets racket at gift shops in Disneyland and Walt Disney World. But Disney pins date to 1930 with the issuance of the first Mickey Mouse Club pin. Cohn & Rosenberger was given a license to produce Disney pins in 1931, Brier Manufacturing got a piece of the action in 1935, and even Tiffany created Disney tchotchkes.

The aspirations Disney had for its knick knacks is evident in that first license given to Cohn & Rosenberger, which was founded in 1901 and opened a major factory in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1929. In the 1930s, Cohn & Rosenberger marketed cloisonne pins of Mickey, Minnie, and Donald as “Kiddie Jewelry,” even as it was on its way to becoming the largest costume-jewelry firm in the world, thanks to innovations such as the figural Coro Duettes, many of which were designed by Adolph Katz. In 1943, Cohn & Rosenberger officially changed its name to Coro.

Disney pins and jewelry from the pre-war years ranged from belt buckles and bracelets to necklaces and rings. Some were merchandised on in-store displays while others, such as those made in 1938 by Brier for "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs," were attached to individualized cards. Plastic pins were introduced in 1940 following the release of “Pinocchio,” as were wood pins for “Fantasia.” Coro made pins in the likeness of Hop Low, a character from “Fantasia,” which were given to those who contributed funds for United China Relief at the beginning of World War II.

Cloisonne pins returned in 1975, when Howard Eldon, Ltd., was briefly hired to supply pins to Disney theme parks and third-party gift shops in the United States. Originally only six styles were available (Mickey, Minnie, Donald, Daisy, Goofy, and Pluto), but the line expanded the next year to include characters from “Snow White,” “Pinocchio,” and “Cinderella.” The cast of characters depicted on pins grew even greater in 1982 with the opening of EPCOT, and ramped up again in 1984 when the summer Olympics were held on Disney’s home turf in Los Angeles. In 1985, pins depicting 60 different characters from seven themed sets were produced with Coca-Cola for the 15th anniversary of Walt Disney World.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Comic Character Pinbacks

Comic Character Pinbacks

Mark Lansdown's excellent collection of over 800 pinbacks representing 200+ comic characters from 100+ strips. Beau… [read review or visit site]

Most watched eBay auctions    

Disney Pin Trading Up Disney Pixar Movie Beloved Tales Balloons Soda FountainDisney Wdi Sorcerer Hat Frozen Sven Reindeer Le PinNew Disney Pin - Masterpiece Series #2 Tinkerbell Van Gogh's Starry Night Le 100New Disney Auctions - Elisabete Gomes (jack Skellington) Le 100 Pin New Disney Pins - Lot Of 20 Limited Edition Le PinsDssh Dsf Disney/pixar's Up Beloved Tales Pin Bt Carl Russell DugWalt Disney Imagineering Wdi Frozen Elsa Characters Sorcerers Hat Set Le 200 PinDisney Pin Wdi Sorcerer Hat Collection Frozen Characters Kristoff Le 200 Ice HtfDisney Wdi Sorcerer Hat Frozen Olaf Le PinDssh Dsf Zero Pin Trader Delight Disney Ptd Nmbc Nightmare Before ChristmasDisney Pin Wdi Frozen Characters Sorcerer Hat Anna Le 200 Princess ImagineeringDisney Pin - Wdw - Ptn Pin Trading Night - Frozen - Elsa Le 750Disney Wdi Pascal From Tangled Sorcerers Hat Le 200 Sold Out PinDisney Jessica Rabbit Dressed Like Peter Pan Le250 Pin HtfMint Disney Pin Lot 10 Disneyland Le Pins Haunted Mansion E Ticket Jungle CruiseDisney Frozen Holiday Package Pin And Litho Limited Ed. Frozen Anna, Elsa & OlafPin Disney Store Europe : Frozen Anna Elsa Sven Olaf Le 1000Disney Pin Pixar Toy Story Dsf Dssh Beloved Tales Le 300 On CardNew Disney Auctions - Tinker Bell And Friends Pin Set (peter) Le 100Disney Pin Wdi Thrill Rides Matterhorn Ariel Little Mermaid Le 300 On CardMint - Lot Of 25 Limited Edition Le Disney Pins, Many Cast ExclusivesDsf Disney Soda Fountain Frozen Snowman Olaf 4th July Hat Surprise Jumbo Le PinDssh Dsf The Wreck It Ralph El Capitan Marquee Disney PinDisney Auctions P.i.n.s. Little Mermaid Ariel Profile Le1000 PinNew Disney Pin Lot - 75 Years With Mickey Framed Easel Le Pins - Lot Of 10 PinsDisney 2011 Walt Disney World 40th Anniversary Cast Member Exclusive Pin & LithoNew Disney Pins Lot - Lot Of 14 Christmas Holiday Pins, Many Le TinkRare Vhtf Disney Shopping Pin Jumbo Ariel Coin Le 300 Oc Little MermaidNew Pin 38756: Disney Auctions - Peter Pan And Tinker Bell Jumbo Le 100Disney Pin - Wdw Hollywood Studios Frozen Pin And Lithograph - Elsa Anna OlafDisney Pin Marshmallow Le 200 From Frozen Lot / Set Cast Exclusive Wdi PinDisney Pin - D23 Destination D 2014 - Wdi - Adventurers Club Chaser - Le 150Disney Frozen Gift Card Pins - Limited Release Set Of 4 - Elsa, Anna, Olaf, SvenNew In Plastic Disney Auctions Pin Tinkerbell Surprised Magnifying Glass Le 100New Disney Pins Lot - Lot Of 15 Pins (many Le) + Bonus Tinkerbell LanyardMint Disney Lot 15 Tinkerbell Pins Including Tinkerbell Laughing Framed Le 100New Pin 43162: Disney Auctions - Tinker Bell In Lantern Jumbo Le 100New Disney Auctions - Postcard Series #3 (jack At Christmas Town) Le 100 PinNew Disney Pins Lot - Lot Of 20 Pins, Many Disneyland Resort Pins, Many TinkDisney Auctions Pin - Elisabete Gomes Pinocchio Le100Mint - Disney Auctions Marc Davis Tinkerbell Body Postcard Le 100 Pin GoldNew Disney Auctions Tinkerbell As Pirate 2003 Pumpkin Pin Le 100New In Plastic Disney Auctions Jumbo Pin Tinkerbell Limited Edition Le 100Dsf Disney Carl & Ellie Envelope Valentine's Letter Pixar Up Le Pin Grape SodaNew Disney Auctions - Tinker Bell And Friends Pin Set (wendy) Le 100Dssh Dsf Zazu Pin Trader Delight Disney Ptd Lion KingDisney Pin Piece Of Movie History Lady Tramp Spaghetti Scene Le 2000 On CardDisney Pin Wdi Frozen Characters Sorcerer Hat Anna Le 200 Princess ImagineeringMint - Disney Tax Day Cpa Scrooge Pin Lot Of 9 - Mostly Limited EditionMint Disney Pins Tinkerbell Spring With Butterflies Le 100 Pin JumboDsf Disney Soda Fountain Great Mouse Detective Beloved Tales Le300 PinMint - Disney Auctions Lot 4 Nightmare Before Christmas Nbc Sally Le PinsDsf Alice In Wonderland The Mad Ice Cream Party Caterpillar Le 300 Disney PinDisney Pin Wdi Sorcerer Hat Collection Frozen Characters Kristoff Le 200 Ice HtfDisney Jumbo E - Ticket - Collection. It's A Small World Pin Very RareNew Disney Auctions Jumbo Pin Peter Pan And Tinker Bell Friendship Day Le 100Dssh Dsf Tron Legacy Set Of Three Identity Discs Disney PinNew Disney Auctions - Tinker Bell Patriotic Salute (jumbo) Le 100 PinNew Disney Auctions - Tinker Bell And Friends Pin Set (john) Le 1002014 Disney D23 Wdi Lion King Sorcerer Hat Pin Set Simba Nala Timon Rafiki Zazu