Aspen History: Snuffy O’Neil’s artistic start in Aspen |

Aspen History: Snuffy O’Neil’s artistic start in Aspen

On March 27, 1947, the Aspen Daily Times profiled Aspen artist Thomas “Snuffy” O’Neil. As the paper stated, “Snuffy has done so many things that it would be hard to get them all in. It isn’t at all surprising that Snuffy is an artist; as far as he knows, almost all of his aunts, uncles, cousins and grandparents have been shoving pencils, pens and brushes across drawing boards for decades. He learned the first things about art in his grandmother’s afternoon drawing class, and can claim Walt Disney as an uncle only slightly removed. When Snuffy was in Junior High School he became vitally interested in two sorts of boards … drawing, and waxed. He won top rating in a nationwide cartoon contest, and he discovered skiing. He has had work in Western Skiing, Ski Annual, and Ski Illustrated. He has done cartoon illustrations for books, on commission, and will have his own book of ski cartoons in print by next winter. Snuffy plans to make Aspen his permanent home. He has bought some land at Fritz Benedict’s place, on Red Mountain, and will open his own art shop here in late spring.”

In this image, Snuffy O’Neil completes a caricature of Countess Zasha Olivia Santivang while she looks on, circa 1947.

This photo and more can be found in the Aspen Historical Society archives at

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