Based in Giengen in Southern Germany the successful German soft toy manufacturer Margarete Steiff GmbH is celebrating its 125th Anniversary in 2005. Founded in 1880 the company produced its very first Steiff animal: an elephant made of felt which was supposed to be used as a pin-cushion. Being the very first soft stuffed animal kids loved it - the rest of the story is history. Today more than 8,500 different Steiff articles are available and every single one can be tracked back by the clever Steiff identification markings such as the famous button, labels and chest tags. As an expert on this subject Mr Gunther Pfeiffer used his access to the company archives to lavishly illustrate this extensive company history with many previously unpublished photographs, anecdotes and original documents - from the very beginning of the family enterprise in the nineteenth century, the presentation of the now legendary Teddy Bear, the development of the oldest and most beautiful German Dragon up to the current soft toy range of classic, lifelike animal characters.