Camera-ready comic art drawing for Mutt & Jeff

Description (Brief)
This pen-and-ink drawing produced for the Mutt & Jeff comic strip shows Mutt asking why there was a fish in his drink.
Al Smith (1902-1986) as a young adult worked in the syndication department for the New York World. After 1932 Mutt & Jeff creator Bud Fisher handed over the strip to Smith, who did not begin signing the strip with his own name until Fisher’s death in 1954. Smith drew the strip until 1980. During his career Smith also wrote other strips, but none as memorable as Mutt & Jeff.
Mutt & Jeff (1907-1983) was originally titled A(ugustus). Mutt, for a character who had previously appeared in creator Bud Fisher’s sports cartoons. In 1908 the character Mutt met Jeff in a behavioral health facility and their pairing proved to be a comedic hit. The characters Mutt and Jeff were written as lovable and simpleminded with a shared gambling problem, regularly shown at the horse races. Mutt & Jeff began to be included in the comic books in the 1930s.
Currently not on view
Object Name
Object Type
date made
graphic artist
Fisher, Bud
Smith, Al
Bell-McClure Syndicate
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
ink (overall color)
overall: 15.4 cm x 45.4 cm; 6 1/16 in x 17 7/8 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Cultures & Communities
Popular Culture
Popular Entertainment
Comic Art
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Graphic Arts
Comic Art
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Credit Line
Newspaper Comics Council, Inc., New York, NY

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