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John Dunn

Oroville Cartoonist


Contributed by Phil Ravert


"In my years of collecting Oroville memorabilia and studying Oroville and Butte County history, I came across these cartoons in a batch of papers that came from an elderly deceased citizen of Oroville. I always wondered who Dunn was and now, thanks to Stu Shaner's column, I am now reasonably certain that the cartoonist is John Dunn."


Given to Stu Shaner in a conversation with Alvin Dunn, John Dunn's brother:


"John Dunn was my brother. He worked for Dan Beebe at the Mercury newspaper as a cartoonist in 1939. He left the Mercury to work for Walt Disney. Later, he was employed at Warner Brothers as one of the artists drawing Bugs Bunny cartoons. John Dunn died of a heart attack in the 1960s."


Samples of John Dunn's work - Contributed by Phil Ravert


Dunn cartoon


Dunn cartoon

Contributed February 25, 2013 by Robert E. Louton, who grew up in Oroville.


I knew Johnny, his brother known to me as Scotty, and his mother (with a lovely Scottish accent) when we and they lived on Park Avenue. Their house was across the street of what is now located an old locomotive at the bluff edge of an old mining claim. At that time in 1940 Treichler's (spelling?)" Hardware was on the corner and Albert lived across the street from us. I was 7 years old at the time.

My most vivid memory was of the times Johnny would visit during which time Albert, Scotty, Orvid Fields, and I would all meet beneath a particular pine tree down in "the claim". There we would sit in awe as Johnny would begin spinning a long story, usually scary. The next morning all the mothers would report nightmares from all of us kids. Looking at the sparse bio about him it seems he turned his basic talent into a fine career. One thing that is omitted as far as my information goes is that some of his cartoons were regularly published in Stars And Stripes. More research needed. I saw in one bio that he had three children and the date of his wife's death uncertain. Wish I had more to offer but the mind of a seven year old is hopefully a work in progress. At eighty my mind may be regressed to three.

Robert E. Louton, PhD
Beatrice, Nebraska

If you knew John Dunn, please contact Stu Shaner 530-533-8147