Table of Contents
Preferred citation for this material is as follows:
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, Political Cartoons: Papers of Bruce Shanks, Central Library: Rare Book Room, Buffalo and Erie County Public Library.
Collection materials were donated to the Rare Book Room of the Buffalo and Erie County Public Library by Shanks' granddaughter Jeanne Diehl in two accessions, September and October, 2008.
Collection processed by: Amy Vilz, October 2008
Finding aid encoded by: Amy Vilz, September 2010
Political cartoons: Papers of Bruce Shanks is open for research.
See librarian for information on reproducting materials from this collection, including photocopies, digital camera images, digital scans, as well as copyright restictions that may pertain to these materials.
Pulitzer Prize winning editorial cartoonist Bruce McKinley Shanks was born in 1908, and served for 23 years as political cartoonist for The Buffalo News. The following was adapted from "Bruce Shanks Dies; News Cartoonist Won Pulitzer Prize", The Buffalo Evening News, April 13, 1980, pp. A1:
Born in Buffalo of Scottish descent, Mr. Shanks received his schooling at School 38 and Lafayette High School. He credited the head of the Lafayette art department, Miss Elizabeth Weiffenbach, with encouraging him in sketching and starting him on what was to be his real career.
He cut short his schooling in 1927 to take a job as a copy boy for the Buffalo Express….Even while he was "running copy," he began drawing cartoons. As he recalled later, he was the most surprised person in the office when the Express began running some of his cartoons. He later joined the former Buffalo Times as a regular cartoonist. In 1933, he moved across Main Street to what was to become his permanent home at The [Buffalo] News…..
In 1951, he was named The News editorial page cartoonist, and he quickly won an international reputation….He won a large number of awards and honors, capped by the 1958 Pulitzer Prize for a cartoon, "The Thinker"…. He received 12 of the annual Freedom Foundation awards for cartoons. His 11 Page One awards of the Buffalo Newspaper Guild became almost an annual event.
Mr. Shanks retired from The News in April of 1974 and moved to Boca Raton, Florida. He died of a cerebral hemorrhage, April 12, 1980.
The collection consists of six drawing mechanicals of political cartoons, mainly created using pencil, ink, and gouache. One drawing is by Shanks. Others were gifted to Shanks and his wife Louise by cartoonists Bill Crawford, Dan Dowling, Bruce Russell, and Pulitzer Prize winner Charles Werner of the Indianapolis Star; these are inscribed and signed by each cartoonist. The collection also includes one reproduction print of a Shanks cartoon, "You're the boss- vote tomorrow!"
Alphabetical by cartoonist.
Crawford, Bill, 1913-1982
Dowling, Dan, 1940-
Russell, Bruce, 1903-1963
Werner, Charles George, 1909-
United States—History—Caricatures and cartoons
United States—Politics and government—Caricatures and cartoons
Genres and Forms
drawings (visual works)
Seven Original Cartoons by Bruce Shanks, 1959-1960. Call number: RBR Local Author .S34 1960
"If y'want anything done right, do it yourself". Pen and ink drawing. Call number: RBR Print 112
"Holiday Punch". Pen and ink drawing. Call number: RBR Print 113