SCREENING & TALK | The Story of the Peanuts' Franklin with The Charles M. Schulz Museum and Cartoonist Robb Armstrong

$15 members
$30 adults | $25 seniors and students | $20 youth
FREE for children 5 and under
Sat, Sep 21 | 1pm

After the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968, Charles Schulz received a letter from a concerned teacher who wanted to do something to “help change the conditions in our society which led to the assassination,” and thought that adding a Black character to his popular Peanuts comic strip might foster positive change. A few months later, Schulz made history by introducing Franklin Armstrong. Five decades have passed since Franklin’s debut, and he now stars in his own special, Snoopy Presents: Welcome Home, Franklin (2024). Join us for a special screening of the film and a discussion of Franklin’s legacy and lasting impact with Charles M. Schulz Museum Curator Benjamin Clark and cartoonist Robb Armstrong, who is a writer on the animated special and Franklin’s namesake.

An autograph signing with the speakers will follow the conclusion of this event, exclusive for all program ticketholders.

On-Sale Information

Tickets for The Story of the Peanuts' Franklin with The Charles M. Schulz Museum and Cartoonist Robb Armstrong are available as follows:

  • Walt’s Circle Donors: Purchase tickets beginning Tuesday, Jun 4 at noon by emailing
  • Founding, Supporter, and Friend-level members: Purchase tickets beginning Wednesday, Jun 5 at noon by emailing
  • All member levels: Purchase tickets online beginning Thursday, Jun 6 at noon via the Member Portal.
  • Public (non-members): Remaining tickets available online beginning Friday, Jun 7 at noon.

Upgrade your membership to receive priority access to purchase tickets. Membership dues and Walt's Circle donations may be paid as monthly installments or as a one-time annual payment. For more information, please email the Membership Department at

About the Speakers

Benjamin L. Clark

Benjamin L. Clark is the world’s luckiest fan of cartoonist Charles Schulz, as Curator of the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center. He has worked in museums since 2003 and currently leads the team responsible for caring for and interpreting the legacy of Charles M. Schulz at the museum in Santa Rosa, California, and around the world.  

He is the co-author of the Eisner Award winning Charles M. Schulz: The Art and Life of the Peanuts Creator in 100 Objects. His work has been featured in The Washington Post, CBS Sunday Morning, and NPR’s Morning Edition. He lives in Santa Rosa with his wife, journalist Susan Minichiello, and their son. 

Robbin (Franklin) Armstrong, the creator of "JumpStart," was born on on March 4, 1962, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


At the age of 3, Armstrong found his vocation by falling in love with the comic strip Peanuts by Charles Schulz. He was captivated by the stories told through simple but deft drawings, and spent the next three years perfecting his rendition of Charlie Brown. Little did Armstrong know that before he turned 27, he would have not only syndicated his own strip but also meet his hero. Armstrong become a protegé and a lifelong friend of Schulz, who immortalized Armstrong in "Peanuts" as Franklin Armstrong: a character Schulz introduced shortly after Martin Luther King Jr.’s assassination in 1968.

Drawing did not come easily for Armstrong, but with steady work and perseverance, he mastered drawing Charlie Brown and Snoopy, followed by characters from "The Flintstones" and a strip called "Wee Pals." The latter was created by Morrie Turner, who would be another mentor to Armstrong, introducing him to Schulz and to the world of syndication.  

After high school, Armstrong pursued and earned a bachelor’s of fine arts degree from Syracuse University.  

In addition to his studies, he created and penned a strip called "Hector" that ran in the Daily Orange newspaper. Through juggling his classes and the strip, he learned self-discipline, how to balance play with work and how to push himself mentally and creatively -- habits that come in handy in any career, but especially as a professional syndicated cartoonist. 

Armstrong stuck with "Hector" after graduating, but when he was unable to get it syndicated, he ultimately created "JumpStart." This strip hit all the right notes, and Robb achieved the Holy Grail of cartooning -- syndication -- in 1989.

Unlike many modern cartoonists, Armstrong still draws his strip by hand in order to ensure that the art feels dynamic. He finds his humor and inspiration in everyday life, in his own family and from random conversations. "JumpStart" focuses on universal truths about life from people of all ages and races; Armstrong believes that it is the shared commonality of life that makes readers truly stop, read and laugh. 

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