Well, apparently they were back then and still are today for people of all ages.
The question is would a child really benefit from spending time coloring in outlines of pictures created by someone else? You can find the answer by thinking of the benefits kids get from colouring in. When a child visits an online coloring page and begins to indulge in the activities there, they learn to appreciate the value of taking their time to ensure that they do a good job. They also teach them to take pride in what they do and know they did their best.
Children develop essential skills through such activities and also build inner confidence. You don't need exclusive membership rights to visit such websites. In fact you can take print outs for free for your children. Whether it is Disney character or any other Hollywood character like Spiderman, you can select the best among all for your kid.
The first coloring book, "The Little Folks' Paint Book" was published in 1879. Crayola introduced the crayon in 1903. And the average American child spends 28 minutes a day coloring and wears down about 730 crayons by the age of 10. Between parents and schools, roughly 2.5 billion crayons are purchased each year.
That said make sure that the kid prints those coloring pages on a used sheet of paper and tell the kid not to waste paper. That way you will also make sure that he grows onto to become and environmentally conscious individual.
Occasionally, you'll find official cartoon or TV character sites (such as PBS programs) will make available coloring pages for free to their fans. And there are many other sites that distribute coloring pages of those copyrighted characters. Sounds like dangerous legal ground ...but, surprisingly, I've never heard of any of these sites being prosecuted for copyright infringement. So they'll probably continue to make them available.
Walt Disney, both the man himself and the founding legacy he then left, was an extremely shrewd businessman and he knew straight away what a phenomenal success the Winnie the Pooh series would be. Translated into different languages from across the globe, it was first translated into Latin in 1958 and has Winnie has appeared in a number of film adaptations all of which have been significant commercial successes.