This letter from the office of Roy Disney, typed on studio letterhead, was written to Mrs. Penelope Tamargo as a congratulatory note on the occasion of her marriage and accompanied a gift of thirty-seven shares of Walt Disney Productions stock. Tamargo, formerly Penelope Cutting, was the sister of Jack Cutting, a dear friend of both Walt and Roy’s, dating back to the early days of the studio.
Cutting first joined the Brothers Disney in 1929, a time when the pair–only employing nineteen animators at the time–had just begun to gain momentum on the heels of the first Mickey Mouse cartoon releases. Cutting, who was given $18 a week and a key to the front door of the Hyperion Avenue studios, lent his talents to a number of Mickey Mouse and Silly Symphony shorts. He also helped pioneer the synchronization of sound and image on many of those early releases. A few years later, he became Walt’s first-ever assistant director (under Snow White-director Dave Hand), then took over directorial duties himself for 1938’s Farmyard Symphony. The next year, he directed the Oscar-winning short The Ugly Duckling. In 1941, Cutting traveled to South America with Walt Disney as part of the famed El Grupo, contributing to both Saludos Amigos and The Three Caballeros. Eventually relocating to the foreign offices, he oversaw dubbing and translation for the studio’s many film projects for many years before returning to the Burbank studios. He stayed close to both Walt and Roy for the duration of their lives, and passed away in North Hollywood in the fall of 1988.
The content of this rare and unique document, which holds ties to both the Disneys and their lifelong friends, the Cuttings, is indicative of the studio founders’ generosity, as they would often gift company stock in generous quantities to family and friends. The type-written letter has been personally signed “Edna & Roy” in the hand of Edna Disney herself, the preceding text reading as follows:
March 3, 1969
We are sending you herewith Certificate LC/O51859 for 37 shares of Walt Disney Productions common stock, in your name, as a wedding gift from us both. As you know, these shares are subject to our tax base of about twenty cents per share when they are sold.
With our love and best wishes to you and Ray for every happiness in the years ahead.
Edna and Roy Disney