Thursday, May 23, 2019

Vintage Mags, 1920: a look back at old magazine covers

Today in the history of the American comic strip: May 23


American cartoonists and writers may not have invented the comic strip, but some argue that the comics, as we know them today, are an American creation. Clearly, the United States has played an outsize role in the development of this underappreciated art form.

5.23.1915: After losing the legal right to use The Katzenjammer Kids name, Rudolph Dirks launches a new strip featuring the same characters. It is christened Hans and Fritz on this date, but anti-German sentiment prompts a name change to The Captain and the Kids in 1918. The Hearst papers ran a competing strip by Harold Knerr, using the strip’s original name.

5.23.1973:  Coulton Waugh dies. His 1947 book, The Comics, was the first comprehensive history and analysis of the medium.

5.23.1999: John Prentice, who took over the detective strip Rip Kirby following the death of creator Alex Raymond, dies. Prentice received a Newspaper Comic Strip award from the National Cartoonists Society in 1966 and again in 1967 and 1986.

5.23.2015: The National Cartoonists Society announces that Stephan Pastis has won the Newspaper Comic Strip award, for Pearls Before Swine. It was his third such honor. Pastis won the award in 2006 and 2003 as well.

Pearls Before Swine

Most of the information listed here from one day to the next comes from two online sites -- Wikipedia, and Don Markstein's Toonopedia -- as well as 100 Years of American Newspaper Comics, edited by Maurice Horn. Note that my focus is on American newspaper comic strips (and the occasional foreign strip that gained popularity in the United States). Thus, comic books and exclusively online comics are not included here.


"What is art but a way of seeing?" Saul Bellow

"Sparrows," Ian MacCulloch

Movie Posters, 1991: Two adults, please, and a large popcorn!


Editorial cartoonists: keeping the legacy of Thomas Nast alive

Matt Wuerker

Journalist H.L. Mencken and the presidency of Donald Trump


"As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

 July 27, 1920
H. L. Mencken, Baltimore Evening Sun
 ~ ~ ~
May 23, 2019
 Another great and glorious day with a downright moron adorning the White House. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Vintage Mags, 1925: a look back at old magazine covers

Today in the history of the American comic strip: May 22


American cartoonists and writers may not have invented the comic strip, but some argue that the comics, as we know them today, are an American creation. Clearly, the United States has played an outsize role in the development of this underappreciated art form.

5.22.1915: George Baker, the creator of Sad Sack, is born in Lowell, Massachusetts. Sad Sack debuted as a comic strip in June 1942, in the first issue of Yank, the Army Weekly.

5.22.1923:
Wallace Carlson and Sol Hess launch The Nebbs. A family strip, it closely resembled Sidney Smith's very popular comic, The Gumps.

5.22.1949: Warren Tufts unveils Casey Ruggles, a Sunday strip set during the California gold rush. It ran until 1955.

5.22.1962: John H. Striebel dies. He began drawing the show girl/career girl strip Dixie Dugan when it debuted in 1929, and continued to do so until the early 1960s, when he became ill.
 
Sad Sack
 
Most of the information listed here from one day to the next comes from two online sites -- Wikipedia, and Don Markstein's Toonopedia -- as well as 100 Years of American Newspaper Comics, edited by Maurice Horn. Note that my focus is on American newspaper comic strips (and the occasional foreign strip that gained popularity in the United States). Thus, comic books and exclusively online comics are not included here.