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Warren King Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: MM
Date: 22 May 1968

Biographical History

Warren King (1916-1978) was an American editorial cartoonist and painter.

Born January 3, 1916, Warren King grew up on Long Island, New York. After graduating from Fordham University in 1938 with a B.S., King studied at the Grand Central School of Art and at the Phoenix Art Institute until 1941. Although trained in painting, King pursued freelance illustration work for books, movies and advertising. King worked as cartoonist Rube Goldberg’s assistant before becoming editorial cartoonist for the New York Daily News in 1955.

The National Cartoonists Society recognized King in 1968 with the best editorial cartoon award and he also received several Freedoms Foundation awards (1953, 1959-1960, 1962-1963) and a 1963 award from the National Conference of Christians and Jews. King was a member of NCS, the Society of Illustrators, and the American Association of Editorial Cartoonists. He was also active in New York journalism organizations including the Newspaper Guild of New York and the Silurians, both of which presented him with awards. King's paintings appeared at the Pentagon and the Air Force Academy in Colorado.

Due to illness, King retired from the Daily News in June 1977 and he died on February 9, 1978 in Wilton, Connecticut.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Warren King Papers consist of two series: Cartoons and Sketches. Cartoons is primarily comprised of over 900 original editorial cartoons drawn for the New York Daily News from 1960 to 1966. Several cartoons are completely undated. Many of the cartoons have notes taped on them listing the edition, final size and other instructions before the cartoon was published.

Also included in the series are 55 copies of cartoons. Notes appear providing information about the government official or personality to whom the original was sent. Also in this series is a bound sample book containing a brief biography of King, a note to the Silurians and examples of his work from the New York Daily News from 1966.

King was also the cartoonist during the 1962-1963 New York City newspaper strike. While King used cartoons to comment on many national and internation events, the cartoons present a unique look at issues and politicians particular to New York City. Included as frequent subjects were Mayors John Lindsay and Robert Wagner as well as rising crime rates, a proposed civilian police review board, off track betting and the city and state's financial problems. Also worth noting is the language used by King in his cartoons. King often labeled figures (both of actual people and his more generic characters) as "finks", "pinkos" (labor union leader Walter Reuther) and "Vietniks".

The cartoons were drawn with pen and ink and graphite on varying textures of paper. Captions appear in blue pencil and traces of pencil are visible on the artwork. Sizes vary, but the majority are approximately 18" x 24".

Sketches contains 13 preliminary pencil sketches of ideas for cartoons on paper. These measure approximately 8 1/2" x 11".

Arrangement of the Collection

The cartoons and sketches are arranged in chronological order with undated materials appearing at the end of the series.


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


Castro, Fidel, 1926- -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Gaulle, Charles de, 1890-1970 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Johnson, Lyndon B. (Lyndon Baines), 1908-1973 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Kennedy, John F. (John Fitzgerald), 1917-1963 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Kennedy, Robert F., 1925-1968 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Khrushchev, Nikita Sergeevich, 1894-1971 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
King, Warren.
Lindsay, John V. (John Vliet) -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Mao, Zedong, 1893-1976 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Rockefeller, Nelson A. (Nelson Aldrich), 1908-1979 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Wagner, Robert F. (Robert Ferdinand), 1910-1991 -- Caricatures and cartoons.

Corporate Bodies

United Nations -- Caricatures and cartoons.
United States. Congress. -- Caricatures and cartoons.

Associated Titles

Daily news (New York, N.Y. : 1920)


American wit and humor, Pictorial.
Athletes -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Caricatures and cartoons -- United States.
Cartoonists -- New York (N.Y.)
Cartoonists -- United States.
Cold War -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Crime -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Editorial cartoons -- New York (N.Y.)
Editorial cartoons -- United States.
Labor unions -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Police -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Social problems -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Taxation -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Transportation -- Caricatures and cartoons.
World politics -- 1945-1989 -- Caricatures and cartoons.


New York (N.Y.) -- Politics and government. -- Caricatures and cartoons.
New York (State) -- Politics and government -- Caricatures and cartoons.
Soviet Union --Politics and government -- Caricatures and cartoons.
United States -- Politics and government -- 1961-1963 -- Caricatures and cartoons.
United States -- Politics and government -- 1963-1969 -- Caricatures and cartoons.

Genres and Forms

Cartoons (humorous images)
Editorial cartoons.
Preliminary sketches.
Sample books.



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Warren King Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Gift of Warren King, 1966-1968.

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.