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Cartoon Archive Information

The Shoe Comics Archive is vast. To date we have about 20% of it in digital and word-searchable form. If you are looking for a cartoon that's not in our online word-searchable database, help us locate it by narrowing down the search. Anything that is not in our digital archive has to be located by hand.

Supplying any of the following information will help us greatly:

First, is it a Shoe cartoon or a MacNelly editorial cartoon?

If it is a Shoe cartoon, is it a Sunday or a Daily?

Can you see a publication date on it?
Note: Each Shoe cartoon has a copyright line and month/day (example 3/14) date on it. Sometimes this is quite small. The copyright line will have one of the following companies following the copyright year:
©XX Jefferson Communications
©XX Tribune Media Services
©XX King Features

This information helps us locate the cartoon in time and dramatically helps reduce the search.

A note about Shoe archives

Since its launch in September of 1977, there have been about 13,000 Shoe cartoons. Jeff MacNelly did the about 6,000. I have been responsible for about 7,000 since taking over production in 1993.

When someone asks Shoe Customer Service to look up an old cartoon, I'm the one who does the search. A typical week of Shoe production takes me about 60 hours leaving me with about one day off a week. That's when I try to catch up on search requests.

My personal Shoe archives go back to 1988. Anything before that is just what's in old Shoe books. These books are heavily edited so looking for early Shoe cartoons is hit-or-miss. Also, in these Shoe books, dates and copyright years have been removed.

A search for something "from the late 70's or early 80's" means looking through a number books without guarantee of success. If I do find the cartoon, the scan from a book is of considerably less resolution that of originals.

In the future, I plan to post more years of Shoe in our online archive. Until then, please be aware that searches take time.

The Birds Behind The Birds

If it is a MacNelly editorial cartoon, it will either have "Richmond News Leader" or "Chicago Tribune" incorporated into Jeff's signature. With editorial cartoons, the more description you can supply the better.

The topic, any text that appears on the cartoon and a general description of the art would be very helpful.

Our goal is to have the entire archive available for reproduction, but as you might guess, the task is Herculean. Jeff was incredibly prolific. He left a mountain of work. We have been archiving for at least five years and have only scratched the surface.

Once you have gathered the information about the cartoon, send your request to specifying the details as mentioned above.

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