Skip to main content

George Fisher Papers

Identifier: MC 1495

Scope and Content Note

The George Fisher papers contain cartoon drafts, originals, and copies, art ideas and inspirations, newspaper clippings, books, scrapbooks, correspondence, photographs, sheet music, audio/visual materials, and artifacts from the life and career of political cartoonist George Fisher and his wife, Rosemary. These records document their personal and professional lives. Examples of items within this collection can be found in the George Fisher digital exhibit.


  • Creation: 1918-2003


Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Access Information

Please call (479) 575-8444 or email at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.

Use Information

No Use Restrictions Apply.

No Interlibrary Loan.

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical Note

Born on April 8, 1923 in rural White County, Arkansas, George Fisher was one of the most famous and renowned political cartoonists in Arkansas history. His work, which carried a strongly liberal and progressive tone, could be found in several Arkansas news publications, most notably the North Little Rock Times, the Arkansas Gazette, and the Arkansas Times.

Fisher had an interest in drawing and cartooning from his childhood onward, and began studies at what is now Arkansas State University-Beebe before being called to fight in World War Two. While in Europe Fisher continued to hone his talents, drawing for the regimental newspaper and attending art classes at the Municipal College of Art in Bournemouth, England. While in Bournemouth, Fisher met Rosemary Beryl Snook, who he would marry after the war in 1946.

Upon finishing his degree, Fisher started his career as a political cartoonist working for the West Memphis-based Arkansas News. The Arkansas News was a reformist newspaper that opposed the political machine in Crittenden County. When the paper folded, Fisher moved to Little Rock and established a commercial art service which continued for the rest of his life.

While in Little Rock, George Fisher continued to be involved in political art, producing advertisements for the gubernatorial campaigns of Sidney S. McMath and the 1954 gubernatorial campaign of Orval Faubus. Fisher also volunteered his cartooning skills for the North Little Rock Times and soon saw his cartoons be republished by the Pine Bluff Commercial and the Sunday Arkansas Gazette. Fisher became the Gazette's full-time Cartoonist in 1976; a position he held until the paper's 1991 closing. After that, Fisher took a position as the cartoonist of the Arkansas Times, a weekly news magazine.

As a cartoonist, George Fisher had several favorite themes and targets, including Orval Faubus and his supporters. Fisher helped popularize the Farkleberry by making reference to an incident in which Faubus was describing the brush to state highway workers. Fisher also originally created the "Old Guard Rest Home" as a holding area for Faubus and his prominent followers as they left office before expanding membership to include other defeated conservative Arkansas politicians. Fisher was also a staunch environmentalist and frequently lampooned the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and their frequent construction projects in Arkansas.

In addition to his cartoon work, George Fisher also created a puppet show called Phydeaux and His Friends with his wife in the 1950s and they were also a major driving force behind the Rackensack folk music collective in Arkansas. Fisher also commemorated his wife, who died in 1983, by hiding her nickname of "Snooky" in his cartoons. George Fisher died on December 15, 2003 at his home in Little Rock.


90 Linear Feet (121 boxes, 1 items)


Cartoons, art, correspondence, clippings, photographs, and artifacts from the life of George Fisher, a political cartoonist from Arkansas.

Arrangement of the Papers

Material is arranged and described in five series:

  1. Series 1. Cartoons
  2. Series 1. Subseries 1. Arkansas News
  3. Series 1. Subseries 2. Arkansas Gazette
  4. Series 1. Subseries 3. Channel 11
  5. Series 1. Subseries 4. Arkansas Times
  6. Series 1. Subseries 5. Photocopies
  7. Series 1. Subseries 6. Farkleberry
  8. Series 1. Subseries 7. Cartoonist
  9. Series 1. Subseries 8. Inspirations
  10. Series 2. Phydeaux and His Friends
  11. Series 3. Rackensack
  12. Series 4. Audio/Visual Materials
  13. Series 5. Personal Papers
  14. Series 5. Subseries 1. George Fisher
  15. Series 5. Subseries 2. Rosemary Fisher

Acquisition Information

The George Fisher Papers were donated to the Special Collections Department by Fisher on December 5, 2002. Additional materials (Box 75, Folders 25-26) were donated by Van Rush, Jr. of Dallas, Texas on December 31, 2013. 2 VHS tapes containing copies of a November 23, 2003 interview with Fisher were added to the collection on May 5, 2022.

Related Materials

Processing Information

Processed by Adam Heien, Rebekah Mason, and Laura Iraheta, completed in October 2019.

Audiovisual materials in Series 4 were digitized by The MediaPreserve in January 2020.

George Fisher Papers
Adam Heien
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Department Repository

University of Arkansas Libraries
365 N. McIlroy Avenue
Fayetteville AR 72701 United States
(479) 575-8444