Besides having “M*A*S*H” DVD sets or other memorabilia, one fan has an actual prop from the show.
Throughout the series, Radar O’Reilly snuggles up with his tattered, one-eyed, brown-and-white teddy bear.
According to IMDb, the teddy bear was a hot commodity after filming. It started out as a prop on display at the Smithsonian. Then it sells at an auction on July 29, 2005, for $11,800. Interestingly enough, the bear wasn’t even originally meant to be in the show. Someone spotted the bear lying on the Fox Ranch, where the show is filmed, and it became a funny element throughout the show.
It had helped further compliment the personality of one of the show’s most beloved characters, Radar. The teddy bear added to his sweet and beloved innocence and youth. The bear remains nameless during the show.
During the second-to-last episode of the show, “As Time Goes By,” the teddy bear goes into a time capsule with other key props. It included Klinger’s “Gone with the Wind” dress and a broken fan belt from a helicopter.
As the bear is dropped in Hawkeye says, “Let [the bear] symbolize all the boys who came over here that left as men.”
The final episode aired was “Goodbye, Farewell and Amen.” It remains the most-watched finale of any television series.
The Missing Teddy Bear
Apparently, the move from the Smithsonian to someone else is a “mysterious disappearance” to Gary Burghoff (Radar O’Reilly on the show).
According to Cision PRWeb, the bear again was up for sale on an online auction on March 27, 2014. Gary Burghoff sold the bear through One of a Kind Collectibles. The final bid was $14,307 and included a notarized letter.
MASH4077TV transcribed the letter where Burghoff talks about the history and legacy of the bear.
“Finally, ‘TIGER’ (as I had secretly named him), surfaced in a specialized show business memorabilia auction. It had been in the possession of the MASH set designer all along! A friend and I purchased it and TIGER has been in our care for many years. The Radar Teddy Bear may be said to be the most famous teddy bear in the world today. MASH is still loved world-wide in more than 15 languages,” the letter said.
As for the actual time capsule in the series, it remained under Fox Ranch.
According to Mental Floss, the land sold two months after the episode. A construction worker allegedly found the time capsule and contacted Alan Alda, the actor who played Hawkeye Pierce.
He told the worker to keep it. The construction worker reportedly wasn’t keen on the idea.