Almost everyone gets their picture taken with Walt Disney and Mickey Mouse. The Partners statue in the Hub of the Magic Kingdom has to be one of the most photographed spots in the World. But how many people even notice the arcane symbol hidden in plain sight, etched onto Walt’s tie?
What is this strange glyph? Does it hold magical powers? Is it a hex or good luck charm? Or maybe a coded symbol for a super secret society? Well, actually, that last one’s pretty close.
The Smoke Tree Ranch was Walt’s home away from home. A rustic little collection of cottages in Palm Springs, where the studio boss could get away and recharge his batteries. The Ranch is still in operation today and even has bungalows named after Walt. Its logo consists of its initials (S-T-R) juxtaposed together to form that strange rune. Walt was fond of Smoke Tree’s clothing, and wore its brand often, accounting for the embroidery on his tie.
Now that you’re aware of it, you won’t be able to not notice it almost every time you see a publicity picture or video with Walt. He wore STR ties frequently on his weekly TV show, and there are dozens of photos scattered across Walt Disney World property where one can catch a glimpse of STR’s free publicity.