Charles Monroe Schulz (1922 -2000) was a 20th-century American cartoonist best known for his Peanuts comic strip. He was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, to Dena and Carl Schulz. His nickname "Sparky" was given by his uncle, after the horse Spark Plug in the Barney Google comic strip. He attended St. Paul's Richard Gordon Elementary School, where he skipped two half-grades. As a result, he was the youngest in his class when he attended St. Paul Central High years later, which may have been the reason why he was so shy and isolated as a young teenager. After his mother died in February, 1943, he was drafted into the army and sent to Camp Campbell in Kentucky. He was then shipped to Europe two years later to fight in World War II. After leaving the United States Army in 1945, he took a job as an art teacher at Art Instruction Inc., which he attended before he was drafted. First published by Robert Ripley in his Ripley's Believe It or Not!, then in a series of chronicles, The Saturday Evening Post, his first regular comic strip, Li'l Folks was published in 1947 by the St. Paul Pioneer Press. (It was in this strip that Charlie Brown first appeared, as well as a dog that looked much like Snoopy). In 1950 he approached the United Features Syndicate with his best strips from Li'l Folks, and Peanuts made its first appearance on October 2, 1950. This strip became one of the most popular comic strips of all time. He also had a short-lived sports-oriented comic strip called It's Only a Game (1957-1959), but abandoned that strip due to the demands of the success of Peanuts.
Essentially, this is the best of the best of 50 years of Peanuts, the comic strip by the late Charles Schulz featuring Charlie Brown, Lucy, Linus, Snoopy, and the rest of the beguiling little gang. Peanuts debuted in 1950 and became a global phenomenon, with book collections selling more than 300 million copies in 26 languages and television specials rerun year after year. To create this all-new Peanuts Guide to Life, we’ve combed through decades of comic strips to find those single panels which contain such pithy observations as ?Babysitters are like used cars. You never know what you’re going to get,” and bits of wisdom like ?Never lick ice cream off a hot sidewalk.” Each droll, stand-alone ?speech bubble” or punchline appears with cartoon art. The panels are organized into short chapters, such as ?Love” and ?Life’s Little Quirks.” For the millions of faithful Peanuts fans, this is a collection of ?greatest hits” to cherish and enjoy again and again.