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Jerry Robinson Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Robinson, Jerry.
Title: Jerry Robinson Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1953-2009
Quantity: 70 linear ft.
Abstract: Correspondence and submissions from readers of True Classroom Flubs and Fluffs , original cartoon artwork for Jett Scott, Still Life and Flubs and Fluffs, proofs and research files.
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010
http://scrc.syr.edu

Biographical History

Jerry Robinson (1922- ) is an American comic book artist and cartoonist.

Robinson was born in Trenton, New Jersey in 1922 and studied journalism at Columbia University. Robinson is known for his work on Batman, which is where his career began in 1939 after meeting Bob Kane, creator of the then-new superhero. He has been credited with creating The Joker (whether alone or with Bill Finger and Bob Kane has been disputed) and assisting in the development Batman's sidekick, Robin the Boy Wonder.

During the 1940s and 1950s, Robinson also worked on comic books for Feature Comics, Harvey Comics and Marvel. He worked on The Green Hornet and tried his hand at an original superhero, Atoman for Spark Comics. Robinson also ghosted on Kerry Drake and the Lone Ranger. In 1953 Robinson launched his first newspaper strip, a science fiction piece entitled Jett Scott, which was syndicated by the New York Herald Tribune and lasted until 1955. He followed this with Still Life and a Sunday page for the New York Daily News entitled True Classroom Flubs and Fluffs (1964-1984). From 1977 to 1995, Robinson also produced Life with Robinson for the Chicago Tribune-New York News Syndicate.

Robinson has also written and illustrated books including The Comics: An Illustrated History of Comic Strip Art (1974). He has curated exhibitions in several countries and has been commissioned by the United Nations to produce exhibitions including a 2007-2008 exhibition for the 60th anniversary of the U.N.'s Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Robinson has been active in many professional organizations. He served as president of the National Cartoonists Society and the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists. Robinson was involved in the overseas tours NCS organized to entertain military personnel. Robinson received the Milton Caniff Lifetime Achievement Award from NCS in 2002 and received awards for Best Comic Magazine Artist (1956), Best Special Feature (1966) and Best Syndicated Panel (1964). He founded and was president of the Cartoonists and Writer’s Syndicate and was a board member for the International Museum of Cartoon Art. He has also received honors from the International Salon of Humor, International Pavilion of Humor in Montreal and at Comic-Con International in San Diego. He has also been involved with the Society of Illustrators and the Overseas Press Club and taught cartooning at the School of Visual Arts during the 1950s.

As of 2010, Jerry Robinson operated CartoonArts International and the Cartoonists & Writers Syndicate which included 550 artists from over 75 countries.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Jerry Robinson Papers are arranged in five series and contain correspondence from readers, artwork, printed material and research material.

Cartoons (1953-1970) contains original artwork, sketches, clippings and proofs of Robinson’s newspaper comic strips and panel cartoons Still Life (Chicago Tribune-New York News Syndicate), Jett Scott (New York Herald-Tribune) and Flubs and Fluffs (New York Daily News). There are also preliminary pencil sketches for Jett Scott and Flubs and Fluffs. Robinson's 161 completed artworks were drawn in ink. The series includes proofs produced in both color and black and white.

Reader Suggestions (opened) and Reader Suggestions (unopened) comprise the bulk of this collection. These series contain submissions by readers of Flubs and Fluffs from 1965 to 1986. Children submitted many of these and some include drawings. One series contains letters that have been opened and the other series contains unopened letters. Some of the incoming mail appears to have was submitted in response to a newspaper advertisement offering ten dollars for the winning suggestion.

The Work Files series consists of research material used by Robinson for the revised edition of his book, The Comics: an Illustrated History of Comic Strip Art (originally published in 1974) as well as for the production of a cartoon calendar. The material includes photocopies and mockups with notes and commentary. Of particular interest are promotional information packets for comic strips popular in the 1990s and 2000s including: Baldo, Cathy, Jump Start, Family Tree, Garfield and Over the Hedge.

Miscellaneous (1953-1972) contains one item of biographical material, assorted printed material and correspondence that is unrelated to the Flubs and Fluffs submissions.

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Arrangement of the Collection

Submissions that were unopened prior to donation have remained unopened. It has been sorted by postmark and foldered by month and/or year.

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Restrictions

Access Restrictions

There are no access restrictions on this material

Use Restrictions

Unopened mail may be opened at the request of researchers. Please contact reading room staff for assistance.

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

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Related Material

Special Collections Research Center has collections of over one hundred cartoonists. Please refer to the SCRC Subject Index for a complete listing.

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Subject Headings

Persons

Robinson, Jerry -- Archives.

Corporate Bodies

New York Herald Tribune (Firm)

Associated Titles

Daily news (New York, N.Y. : 1920)
Jett Scott (comic strip)
Still life (cartoon)
True Classroom Flubs and Fluffs (cartoon)

Subjects

American wit and humor, Pictorial.
Caricatures and cartoons -- United States.
Cartoonists -- United States.
Comic books, strips, etc.
Language and languages -- Caricatures and cartoons.

Genres and Forms

Cartoons (humorous images)
Children’s drawings.
Clippings (information artifacts)
Comic strips.
Correspondence.
Fan mail.
Promotional materials.
Proofs (printed matter)
Research notes.
Sketches.

Occupations

Cartoonists.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Jerry Robinson Papers
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Jerry Robinson, 1967-1974, 2009-2010.

Finding Aid Information

Created by: [Summit record]
Date: 2001-01-01
Revision history: 12 Mar 2007 - converted to EAD (MRC); 19 Nov 2010 - revised and updated bio, scope and inventory (SK)

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Inventory

Cartoons
Jett Scott
Original artwork
Click here for a detailed inventory of daily and Sunday strips.
Oversize 3 Daily strips 1953-1955 (33 items) 7" x 20 3/4"
Oversize 2 Sketches 1953-1955 - multiple days on each board, months and days but no years (71 items) 14 1/4" x 22 ½"
Oversize 2 Sunday strips 1953-1955 (21 items) 14 1/4" x 23"
Box 20 Promotional and printed material 1955
Proofs (Sunday)
Oversize 1 Black and white glossy 1953-1955 (84 items)
Oversize 1 Black and white newsprint 1953-1955 (55 items)
Oversize 1 Color newsprint 1953-1955 (46 items)
Still Life
Box 20 Clippings 1963-1964 Oct
Box 21 Clippings 1966 Jul-1967 Jun
Box 22 Clippings 1967 (2 folders)
Box 22 Clippings 1968 (9 folders)
Box 22 Clippings 1969-1970
Box 74 Original artwork 1963 Jun-1964 Jun, 1964 Aug 6 3/4" x 8" (80 items)
Click here for a detailed inventory. Items are also numbered on the back.
True Classroom Flubs and Fluffs
Oversize 3 Original artwork 1965-1967 (27 items) 15" x 20"
Click here for a detailed inventory.
Oversize 3 Preliminary sketches undated
Box 22 Miscellaneous undated
Reader suggestions (opened)
Flubs and Fluffs contributions
Box 1-20 1965-1968
Box 22-23 1965 (8 folders)
Box 23-24 1966 (19 folders)
Box 24-28 1967 (53 folders)
Box 78 1967-1969, undated (19 folders)
Box 28-33 1968 (59 folders)
Box 75 1968 (1 folder)
Box 33-37 1969 (61 folders)
Box 38-41 1970 (52 folders)
Box 75 1970 (1 folder)
Box 42-45 1971 (42 folders)
Box 75 1971 (1 folder)
Box 45-49 1972 (55 folders)
Box 75 1972 (1 folder)
Box 49-51 1973 (33 folders)
Box 75 1973 (1 folder)
Box 51-53 1974 (9 folders)
Box 75 1974-1979 (6 folders)
Box 76 1983-1986 (4 folders)
Box 22 1960s-1970s (9 folders)
Box 77 Undated (10 folders)
Box 79 Undated (6 folders)
Reader suggestions (unopened)
Flubs and Fluffs contributions
Box 54-55 1966 (27 folders)
Box 80 1966 Jul-Aug (17 folders)
Box 55-57 1967 (28 folders)
Box 58-60 1968 (28 folders)
Box 60 1969 (1 folders)
Box 60 1972 (6 folders)
Box 60-63 1973 (6 folders)
Box 63-64 1974 (24 folders)
Box 65 1975 (7 folders)
Box 65-66 1976 (12 folders)
Box 66-68 1977 (33 folders)
Box 68 1978 (9 folders)
Box 68 1983-1985 (8 folders)
Box 69 1986 (2 folders)
Box 69 1960s-1970s (2 folders)
Box 69 Undated (12 folders)
Work files
Box 73 Calendar circa 1990s (2 folders)
Oversize 1 Calendar 1995-1997 (3 folders)
Box 73 Calendar data 1997 (2 folders)
Box 73 Image scans circa 2000s (4 folders)
Box 73 Research 1990s-2000s (7 folders)
Box 74 Research 1990s-2000s (6 folders)
Box 70 Promotional packets for comic strips A-F 1990s-2000s (5 folders)
Box 71 Promotional packets for comic strips G-O 1990s-2000s (5 folders)
Box 72 Promotional packets for comic strips P-Z 1990s-2000s (5 folders)
Box 73 Used miscellaneous 1997 (1 folder)
Miscellaneous
Box 20 Biographical material 1953
Box 22 Printed material, correspondence 1967-1972

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