December 1963: Smiley face

In 1963, State Mutual Life Assurance Company in Worcester, Mass., faced a problem. The firm had purchased Guarantee Mutual Company of Ohio the previous year to work with Worcester Mutual Fire Insurance Company, a State Mutual subsidiary. Low employee morale in the merged companies prompted State Mutual Vice President John Adam Jr. to suggest a "friendship campaign." He asked Joy Young, Assistant Director of Sales and Marketing, to develop something. Young turned to Worcester freelance artist Harvey Ball, requesting he create a little smile to be used on buttons, desk cards and posters. Ball drew a smile but, not satisfied with the result, added two eyes, making a smiley face. The whole drawing, he recalled later, took ten minutes.
     -- From Harvey Ball World Smile Foundation; link: @
     -- photo from Smithsonian.com
* Summary from Worcester Historical Museum: @
* Summary from Toonopedia: @
* "Who invented the smiley face?" (from The Straight Dope): @
* "Who Really Invented the Smiley Face?" (from Smithsonian.com): @
* English-language website from Japan: @
* Harvey Ball obituary (2001): @ 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Blog archive


Follow: @