VERY RARE MANUSCRIPT BOOKLET BY PEANUTS CREATOR CHARLES SCHULZ INTENDED AS A MOCK-UP FOR HOLT, RINEHART SALES MANAGER FRANK CLOSE, COMPRISING AN AUTOGRAPH NOTE AND A CAPTIONED ORIGINAL DRAWING OF SNOOPY AND HIS DOGHOUSE
SCHULZ, Charles M. Manuscript booklet containing autograph note and original drawing. No place, circa mid-1960s. Booklet made of single sheet of paper folded in half, measuring 7 by 7 inches; pp. 3. $6800.
Rare and wonderful mock-up manuscript booklet given by Charles Schulz to the sales manager at his publisher, Holt, Rhinehart, with an autograph note suggesting that his cartoon books be produced on the same stock and in the same size as the booklet and with an original drawing of Snoopy as an aviator, captioned on the facing page in the prospective text style.
In the mid-1960s, when Schulz drafted this booklet, he was in the process of developing his Peanuts cartoon books in collaboration with Holt, Rinehart & Winston (later Holt). The booklet was addressed to Frank Close, Holt's sales manager. The note on the front of the booklet reads: "Frank—How would this be for actual page size? I think colored stock could be good, too." Inside the booklet, Schulz has sketched an original drawing of Snoopy dressed as the Red Baron, sitting on top of his doghouse. On the facing page, Schulz has written—in a style clearly intended to suggest a future font—"Here I am flying high over the enemy lines." The books were ultimately square and printed on color stock, quite similar to what Schulz suggested in this booklet.
Schulz was the most widely syndicated cartoonist in history, with his work appearing in over 2300 newspapers, and Snoopy is one of his most beloved creations. "Snoopy may be shallow in his way, but he's also deep, and in the end deeply alone, as deeply alone as Charlie Brown is. Grand though his flights are, many of them end with his realizing that he's tired and cold and lonely and that it's suppertime. As Schulz noted on The Today Show when he announced his retirement, in December 1999: 'Snoopy likes to think that he's this independent dog who does all of these things and leads his own life, but he always makes sure that he never gets too far from that supper dish.' He has animal needs, and he knows it, which makes him, in a word, human" (The Atlantic). While this book was originally given to Frank Close, he passed it on to his subordinate, a production manager, with Schulz's express permission. This item is directly from the production manager's estate.
Very faint soiling to exterior of booklet, not affecting pristine original drawing or caption. Extremely desirable.