Mutt and Jeff, by Bud Fisher 1910

Harry Conway Fisher, who drew the world-famous 'Mutt and Jeff' strip as "Bud" Fisher, was born in Chicago. In 1905, he left in his third year at the University of Chicago to take a job as a triple-treat cartoonist (theatre, sports and general news) at the San Francisco Chronicle. He persuaded the sports editor to let him draw a page-wide daily comic strip, in imitation of Clare Briggs' 'A. Piker Clerk', called 'A. Mutt', dealing with a chronic horseplayer's wins and losses. A Sunday page was added around the time the strip got its permanent title, 'Mutt and Jeff'.

Mutt and Jeff, by Bud Fisher

In 1915, Bud Fisher wanted greener pastures, and took the strip to the Wheeler Syndicate, where he received 1,000 dollars a week for six strips. By 1921, he was well on his way to making a top salary of 4,600 dollars a week. By this time, he grew more and more interested in racehorses, and less interested in the daily mechanics of drawing Mutt and Jeff. He hired Billy Liverpool to do most of the artwork. Aside from his apparent loss of interest in the strip after 1934, Fisher continued to enjoy life, managing to squander most of the wealth 'Mutt and Jeff' had made him before he died on 7 September, 1954.

Mutt and Jeff, 1932, by Bud Fisher

Mutt and Jeff, 1932, by Bud Fisher

another Bud Fisher biography

Last updated: 2011-02-04

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