Collection inventory

Special Collections home page

Jack Kent Cartoons

An inventory of his cartoons at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: MD
Date: 9 Dec 2008

Biographical History

Jack Kent (1920-1985) was an American cartoonist and illustrator. He was the creator of the newspaper comic strip King Aroo.

Originally from Burlington, Iowa, Jack Kent began placing magazine gag cartoons while still in his teens. After military service with the U.S. Army during World War II, Kent continued as a freelance illustrator, and in 1950 launched the comic strip King Aroo. Initially distributed by the McClure Syndicate, then McClure-Bell when those syndicates merged, King Aroo ultimately survived due to the direct interest of Stanleigh Arnold, features editor at the San Francisco Chronicle. Arnold was a big fan of the quirky, slightly surreal comedy of Kent's strip and established his Golden Gate Syndicate to keep the sovereign King of Myopia on his throne when McClure-Bell lost interest. King Aroo ultimately ceased in 1965. Kent continued as a commercial artist and children's books illustrator for the remainder of his career, working on dozens of books including the award winners Just Only John and Mr. Meebles. A reprint edition of King Aroo strips was issued in 1952.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Jack Kent Cartoons collection contains 54 original daily cartoons from the comic strip King Aroo (1959, 1963-1964). Daily cartoon: blue pencil, brush, pen and ink on illustration board, approx. 5 ¼ x 16 ¼ in.

Arrangement of the Collection

Cartoons are in chronological order.


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


Kent, Jack, 1920-1985.

Associated Titles

King Aroo (comic strip)


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

Genres and Forms

Cartoons (humorous images)



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Jack Kent Cartoons,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Table of Contents

King Aroo cartoons