In 1916, Planters Nut and Chocolate Company ran a contest for a trademark. Antonio Gentile, a resident of Suffolk, Virginia, the peanut-growing capital of the state, began sketching possible entries for the contest. He drew a friendly, humanized peanut tumbling, serving nuts, and walking with a dignified cane. One of his sketches won the contest; Gentile earned $5, and became forever known as the young boy who created Mr. Peanut. Mr. Peanut himself got a little polish from a graphic artist and went on to a long career as the classy, and until recently, silent spokes-character for their product.
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