CREATION OF THE PEANUTS
&
MORE

About CHARLES M. SHULZCharles M Shulz

Charles Monroe Shulz was born to Carl Shulz and Dena Halverson in Minneapolis, Minnesota and grew up in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Schulz loved drawing and sometimes drew his family dog, Spike, who ate unusual things, such as pins and tacks. In high school he was a shy and timid teenager. At one point in highschool he made drawings for the yearbook and ironically they were rejected. Later on in 1943, he was drafted into the United States Army and served as a sergeant with the 20th Armored Division in Europe as a light machine gun squad leader. He later moved back to Minneapolis and became an art teacher at Art Instruction Inc.

Creation of THE PEANUTS

Schulz's first regular cartoons, Lil' Folks, was published from 1947 to 1950 by the St. Paul Pioneer Press. In 1948, Schulz sold a cartoon to The Satuday Evening Post, the first of 17 single-panel cartoons by Schulz that would be published there. In 1948, Schulz tried to have Li'l Folks syndicated through the Newspaper Enterprise Association. Schulz would have been an independent contractor for the syndicate, unheard of in the 1940s, but the deal fell through. Li'l Folks was dropped from the Pioneer Press in January, 1950. Later on the Peanuts premiered on October 2, 1950, in eight newspapers The Washington Post, The Chigaco Tribune, The Minneapolis Tribune, The Allentown Call-Chronicle, The Bethlehem, Globe-Times, The Denver Post, The Seattle Times, and The Boston Globe. It began as a daily strip. The very first strip was four panels long and showed Charlie Brown walking by two other young children, Shermy and Patty. Snoopy was also an early character in the strip, first appearing in the third strip, which ran on October 4.

The Peanuts Gang

End of THE PEANUTS

The final daily original Peanuts comic strip was published on January 3, 2000.

Although the daily strips came to an end, five more original Sunday Peanuts strips had yet to be published. The last of those was published on February 6, 2000, six days before Schulz died.

On February 13, 2000, the day following Schulz's passing, the last ever Peanuts strip ran in papers. The strip began with Charlie Brown answering the phone with someone on the end presumably asking for Snoopy. Charlie Brown responded with "No, I think he's writing." The bottom panel consisted of the final daily strip in its entirety, reprinted in color, and included various Peanuts characters surrounding it. The very last strip consisted simply of Snoopy sitting at his typewriter in thought with a note from Schulz that read,

" Dear Friends,
I have been fortunate to draw Charlie Brown and his friends for almost fifty years. It has been the fulfillment of my childhood ambition. Unfortunately, I am no longer able to maintain the schedule demanded by a daily comic strip, My family does not wish "Peanuts" to be continued by anyone else, therefore I am announcing my retirement. I have been grateful over the years for the loyalty of our editors and the wonderful support and love expressed to me by fans of the comic strip. Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Linus, Lucy...how can I ever forget them...
"

After Peanuts came to an end United Feature Syndicate began offering the newspapers that ran it a package of reprinted strips under the title Classic Peanuts. The syndicate limited the choices to either strips from the 1960s or from the 1990s, although a newspaper was also given the option to carry both reprint packages if it desired. All Sunday strips in the package, however, come from the 1960s. Though it no longer maintains the "first billing" in as many newspapers as it enjoyed for much of its original run, Peanuts remains one of the most popular and widely syndicated strips today.

Lucy VanPelt and Charlie Brown

SnoopyWoodstock