New Yorker cartoonist Peter Arno may not have invented the single-speaker captioned cartoon, but he surely perfected it. He was born Curtis Arnoux Peters, Jr. on 8 January 1904 in New York City. He was about to abandon his ambition to be an artist for a musical career when he received a check for a drawing that he submitted to a new humor magazine, The New Yorker, that had debuted February 21, 1925.
With the publication of this spot illustration on June 20, 1925, Arno began a 43-year association with Harold Ross's weekly, until his death. Arno's many iconic covers and cartoons helped build The New Yorker's reputation of sophisticated humor and high quality artwork. A pun from one of his 1941 cartoons has remained a popular catchphrase: "Well, back to the old drawing board." Until at least 1962, he was also working for Circus Magazine by Barnum & Bailey.