Shortly after completing that first Alice cartoon, Walt went into bankruptcy. He gave up on keeping his Kansas City studio operating after receiving no payment for the several cartoons he had produced under a contract he entered into with a church-based company in Tennessee.
Walt saved all the money he could put together to buy a first-class ticket to Los Angeles on the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway. He left Kansas City in the late summer of 1923, taking with him the one-reel Alice cartoon in a cardboard suitcase. However, before he left Kansas City, he made a point of taking his mouse companion out into the countryside so he would not fall victim to the cats which lived in the restaurant on the first floor of the Laugh-O-gram building.
Five years later, that mouse inspired the creation of the world’s most famous fictional character, Mickey Mouse!