Walter Crawford Kelly, Jr. (August 25, 1913 – October 18, 1973), or Walt Kelly, was an American animator and cartoonist, best known for the comic strip, Pogo. He began his animation career in 1936 at Walt Disney Studios, contributing to Pinocchio and Fantasia. Kelly resigned in 1941 at the age of 28 to work at Dell Comics, where he created Pogo, which eventually became his platform for political and philosophical commentary.

Kelly was born of Irish-American heritage in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to Walter Crawford Kelly, Sr., and Genevieve Kelly (née MacAnnula). When he was two years old, the family moved to Bridgeport, Connecticut. After graduating from Warren Harding High School in 1930, Kelly worked at odd jobs until he was hired as a crime reporter on the Bridgeport Post. He also took up cartooning and illustrated a biography of fellow Bridgeport native P. T. Barnum. Kelly was extremely proud of his journalism pedigree and considered himself a newspaper man as well as a cartoonist.

Kelly became close friends with fellow cartoonists Milton Caniff and Al Capp, and the three occasionally referred to each other in their strips.


Walt Kelly Poems

For Genevieve MacAnnulla

A song not for now
You need not put stay ..
A tune for the was... more »

The Prince of Pompadoodle

The Prince of Pompadoodle
Lived behind a castle wall.
Behind a moat, behind a guard... more »

Willow the Wasp

There were some wasps in our town
Who, with their wondrous wives,
They suckled at the bramble bush... more »

Walt Kelly Quotes

A man of rare perception. In fact [he] had such rare perceptions they amounted to hallucinations.
Walt Kelly (1913-1973), U.S. cartoonist. I Go Pogo, Simon and Schuster (1952).

Comments about Walt Kelly

Indiana Jim 23 Sep 02:14
A Pogo poem by Walt began something like this: " As I gaze up in the night, To cosmos filled by mysteries bright..." I can't remember the rest.: -(