Editorial cartoonist, author and illustrator Kate Salley Palmer is donating to Modern Political Collections a portion of her cartoon archive and the whole of the records of her work as an author, illustrator and publisher of books for children.
Palmer's cartoons are also being collected by Ohio State University. This unusual division of her work reflects Palmer's importance as a cartoonist and the anticipated research use of her collection. The South Caroliniana Library will receive editorial cartoons chiefly relating to state and local issues. These cartoons will be a wonderful resource for people researching South Carolina government and politics. Ohio State University collects the work of cartoonists from across the United States and will receive Palmer's cartoons relating chiefly to national and international subjects.
An Orangeburg native, Palmer began her career as a cartoonist while a student at the University of South Carolina. Her strip, 'Terrible Tom and the Boys," was featured in The Gamecock between 1966 and 1968. She received her B.A. in elementary education in 1968 and moved to Clemson to work as graphic artist. In 1975 she began freelancing editorial cartoons for the Greenville News. She worked for the paper on a full-time basis from 1978 to 1984. Her cartoons were syndicated nationally from 1981 to 1986, appearing in over two hundred newspapers nationwide, including the New York Times, Chicago Sun-Times, and Washington Post. In 1981 Palmer received the Freedom Foundation's Principal Award for Editorial Cartooning. She provided cartoons to nine area papers briefly, during 1986 and 1987, then turned to illustrating books.
Palmer and her husband Jim founded Warbranch Press to publish her books for children and to date have published three books. The books have proven to be popular and draw heavily on her South Carolina background and experiences. Her latest publication, The Little Chairs, tells the story of a family in which the father is beset with depression. The book has become popular among professionals dealing with families where depression is an issue. It is proving a valuable tool to help the children who suffer in such situations.
Among Palmer's current projects is a book which will be a combination memoir and cartoon retrospective. It will also include some more recent but previously unpublished cartoons.