Original Gerber baby, Ann Taylor Cook just celebrated her 90th birthday on Sunday and Gerber released a video to celebrate her big day.
Cook’s picture became the baby food maker’s official trademark in 1931. Cook was about 4-months-old in 1927 when her image was sketched in charcoal by a family friend, Dorothy Hope Smith.
The drawing was submitted to Gerber a year later when Gerber put out a call for images to be used in its new baby food advertisements.
In an interview with WFLA-TV, Cook speaking of the sketch said, her family friend, Dorothy Hope Smith, wrote her (later) that she had thought it was kind of unfinished, and if they liked it she could finish it properly, but they were smart enough that they didn’t want anything done to it.
She has only made a little money from her association with the brand; in 1950, someone else claimed to be the Gerber baby, and the company paid Cook a lump sum to settle any issues over her likeness.
Cook who became a mother of four is now a great-grandmother, and has remarked about how when her kids were young, they bragged about their mom whenever they were in the baby food aisle.
Cook has celebrated Gerber’s anniversaries in 1978 and once in the 1990s. She has spent her career teaching English and writing mystery novels in Tampa, Florida, for 26 years before retiring in 1989.
This year, Cook celebrated her birthday with her four children and their spouses.
Gerber’s 2016 baby is a cute Michigan girl named Isla, who beat out 170,300 entries in the company’s annual photo contest. She won her family $50,000, plus a bunch of kids’ clothing and the opportunity to be featured in an ad.