October 23

Born October 23, 1920, Bob Montana knew he wanted to be a cartoonist from the age of seven. He received his childhood schooling backstage in theater dressing rooms, where he also learned about comedy and humor writing. He spent his school summers in Meredith, New Hampshire, where his father raised vegetables and operated a restaurant. Montana practiced his cartooning by drawing caricatures of the restaurant’s customers. He kept diaries of local events and news stories, illustrating the diary pages with his cartoons. The students and faculty of Haverhill High later inspired the leading characters in the Archie cast. While freelancing at True and Fox Comics, Montana created an adventure strip about four teenage boys and tried to sell it without success. Then he started working for MLJ comics where later he was asked to work up a high school style comic strip story. At the age of 21, he created Archie, drawn from his own high school experiences.