Collection inventory

Special Collections home page

Jon Kennedy Cartoons

An inventory of his cartoons at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: MD
Date: 20 Nov 2008

Biographical History

Jon Kennedy (1918- ) is an American editorial cartoonist who worked at the Arkansas Democrat for over 40 years.

Born in Springfield, Missouri on August 19, 1918, Kennedy started his career as a staff artist at the Springfield (Mo.) Leader-Press while still in high school. After several years in the art department there (1935-1941), Kennedy moved on to become editorial cartoonist in August 1941 for the Arkansas Democrat in Little Rock. In 1943, Kennedy enlisted in the Army and was discharged in April 1946. While in the military, Kennedy cartooned, drew training materials, and painted.

Kennedy considered working in comic strips through the Newspaper Enterprise Association and also at the Chicago Sun Times. But he returned to his position at the Democrat in 1946 where he would remain until his semi-retirement. On September 16, 1988 his final cartoon appeared. Kennedy returned to cartooning in 1992 for Arkansas Business, eventually retiring because of vision problems in 2005.

In addition to his newspaper work, Kennedy also maintained a graphic arts and poster business (1963-1992), where he distributed his "Dropout Blues" posters to schools and libraries nationally in an effort to reduce school dropout rates. Hoping to avoid bias, Kennedy sought to keep his commercial work separate from his editorial cartoons by working from a studio not connected with the Arkansas Democrat.

Jon Kennedy joined the American Association of Editorial Cartoonists 1957 as a charter member and published a book of cartoons "Look Back and Laugh" in 1978. He was recognized as "Arkansas Journalist of the Year" in 1988 and in 2006 he was interviewed for the Arkansas Democrat Project, sponsored by the Pryor Center for Arkansas Oral and Visual History at the University of Arkansas.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Jon Kennedy Cartoons contain 15 original editorial cartoons published in the Arkansas Democrat. There are 10 cartoons from 1968 and 5 cartoons from 1969. The cartoons were drawn on illustration board primarily with ink and graphite.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions:

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

Related Material

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

Subject Headings


Kennedy, Jon, 1918-

Corporate Bodies

Arkansas Democrat gazette.


American wit and humor, Pictorial.
Caricatures and cartoons -- United States.
Cartoonists -- United States.
Editorial cartoons -- Arkansas.
Editorial cartoons -- United States.
Political cartoons.
Vietnam War, 1961-1975 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
World politics -- 1945-1989 -- Caricatures and cartoons.

Genres and Forms

Cartoons (humorous images)
Editorial cartoons.



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Jon Kennedy Cartoons,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Jon Kennedy, 1968-1969.

Table of Contents


Index to cartoons


Index to cartoons

The following is a list of predominant people, places and subjects appearing in the editorial cartoons in this collection. The list is not exhaustive. Some subjects may require you to browse with alternative terms.

B= Box, F= Folder. For example: B1F1= Box 1 Folder 1.