Tuesday, March 31, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Alex Blum / Al Boon

Alex A. Blum was born in Budapest, Hungary, on February 7, 1889. Blum’s birthplace and birth date were found on his application and petition for naturalization, and his World War I and II draft cards. Who’s Who of American Comic Books 1928–1999 said his name was Alexander Anthony Blum. According to Classics Illustrated: A Cultural History (2001), his birth name was Sándor Aladár.

A passenger list at Ancestry.com listed “Alader Blum”, his mother, older sister Hedweg and younger brother Inare. They sailed on the S.S. Potsdam from Rotterdam on May 17, 1900, and arrived in New York City on May 29. The Herald Statesman (Yonkers, New York), August 22, 1964, said Blum and his family settled in Cincinnati:

“I always had an interest in drawing,” he Blum says, “and when I won three prizes in a contest run by Cincinnati newspapers at the age of 13 I was sold on art.”
He attended the Cincinnati Art Academy and then was lured to New York, where he worked and attended night school. “As reporter for the old New York Herald I really banged around,” recalls Mr. Blum. “I was in and out of all the courts and precincts.”
At night he studied at the National Academy of Design, winning a scholarship after a few months. While a student there he was awarded a bronze medal in a city-wide etching competition and first prize in the National Academy show in 1909.
The New York Herald, May 15, 1909, named the prize: “Etching Class—First prize, A.H. Baldwin Fund, $50, Alexander Aladar Blum”. Two years earlier, the New York Tribune, May 11, 1907, reported Blum’s Suydam bronze medal for illustration at the academy. 

According to the American Art Annual, Volume 29 (1932), Blum was a pupil of Frank Duveneck and Charles F.W. Mielatz.

The 1910 U.S. Federal Census recorded Blum (as “Alex A.”), his mother and siblings in Manhattan, New York City at 500 West 172 Street. He was a newspaper artist. At some point he moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where he filed his Declaration of Intention with the Naturalization Service district office. He lived at 40 Huntington Avenue when he signed the form as “Aladar Blum” on April 18, 1913. 

In the 1915 New York State Census, “Alex Blum” resided with his mother and brother in Brooklyn New York at 2060 83rd Street.

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle (New York), October 21, 1915, published a glowing review of his work.

Alex Aladar Blum of 2060 Eighty-third street, Brooklyn, is showing until November 6 in the Print Gallery, above Ehrlch’s, on Fifth avenue, Manhattan, about two score etchings, this being his first exhibition in Greater New York. He is only 26 years old, and yet his works exhibit both the delicacy and strength of men far older than he. Moreover he shows that he is open to tho most modern influences, such as those of the French school, instanced by Matisse, although he taboos the ultra tendencies of that school. The collection is singularly interesting, in that it shows Mr. Blum’s development in various phases of the art of etching. While he is master of expressive drawing and modeling, he evinces, especially in his latest work, a gift for suggesting light and color and rhythm, in the latter using the slightest means for producing large results.
More than mere cleverness is revealed in the “Rhythm of line; a sequence,” as he terms nine examples. In them he gives a feeling as of music, and all by the use of the line. Perhaps the most beautiful in the nine etchings is “The Wave,” lines in a cure of grace passing across the picture and, in various well composed attitudes, accompanying the wave is a number of nudes. “The Comet” is also striking, with nudes posed as though mounting upward in a curved course, while effect in opposition is given by lines curved in the background. In the same category are “Nudes,” “The Lake,” “Mother and Child,” a peculiarly interesting composition; “Bathers,” “Hills and Lake,” “The Castles" and “The Dance,” in which the interfering line of the main motive has a stimulant effect to the eye.
Many of Mr. Blum’s etchings of fact were done in Boston and other parts of Massachusetts. He knows exactly where to be delicate and atmospheric, as in “On the Beach,” the frontal of tho Boston Public Library, “Copp’s Hill,” “Brewer Fountain.” “Pigeons,” “Revere Bench” and “Bath Beach.” Also, he knows where to be a faithful reporter, as in the on board ship “Halting Hooks” (two examples), “T Wharf,” the Paul Revere house, and in “Tho Two Giants,” a capital presentation of the Brooklyn and Manhattan bridges. He also knows emphatically, how to bring out character, as in the two examples termed “Ghetto,” with a man and a woman as excitedly engaged in bargaining as in a bazar in an Oriental city; furthermore, in a lovely “Study,” a young girl at her books; “Mother and Baby,” “Apple Mary,” “The Pretzel Vendor” and “Old Woman.” Two studies in dry point show soft and velvety blacks, and distinctive are two roulette works, “Danseuso” and “Roof Garden.”
Mr. Blum was born in Cincinnati, Ohio [sic], in 1889, and after visiting Europe he returned to the art school in his native city. Later he was a pupil at the National Academy of Design, where he won first prize for etching and a bronze medal for drawing. For a time he taught at the Boston Art School.
The Herald Statesman told of the next major event in his life.
Working on a newspaper during the day, Mr. Blum did some oil painting and etching before becoming involved with a theater group. He designed a stage set for one production and at the theater he met an attractive costume designer. “We were co-workers, both young, and—you know—one thing led to another.” Mr. Blum married the former Helen Abrahams in 1917.
A marriage notice appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, January 3, 1917: “Aladar Blum, an artist, of Brooklyn, N.Y., was granted a marriage license to wed Helen Abrahams, of 3119 Diamond street. Blum is 37 and his intended bride 30. Miss Abrahams’ father is a manufacturer.” On January 17, 1917, Blum and Helen Abrahams married in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, according to her profile in Who’s Who in American Jewry (1926) and Jewish Women in America (1997).

On May 6, Blum signed his World War I draft card, which had his name as Aladar and Manhattan address at 12 West 8th Street. The artist’s description was tall, medium build with brown eyes and black hair.

Blum, his wife and daughter, Audrey, were in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at 1001 Pine Street, when the 1920 census was enumerated. He was a newspaper illustrator. Two months earlier on November 5, 1919, he had filed his Petition for Naturalization in Philadelphia. It was approved on May 14, 1920. When Blum swore his oath of allegiance to the United States, he also changed his name:
…It is further ordered, upon consideration of the petition of the said, Aldar [sic], that his name be, and hereby is, changed to Alex Blum, under authority of the provisions of section 6 of the act approved June 29, 1906...
Who’s Who of American Comic Books said Blum worked in advertising during the 1920s. Advertising Arts and Crafts (1927) had this listing: “Blum, Alex A., Baker Bldg., Rit 7893 Philadelphia, Pa. Figure, Etching.”

Blum illustrated two books by Mary Hazelton Wade: The Boy Who Dared: The Story of William Penn (1929) and The Boy Who Loved the Sea: The Story of Captain James Cook (1931).

In the 1930 census, Blum was an artist and remained in Philadelphia but at a different address, 3303 West Queen Lane. New to the family was a son, Robert. Sometime before 1935, the Blums moved to New York City. According to Who’s Who of American Comic Books, around 1938 Blum joined the studio formed by Will Eisner and Jerry Iger.

The Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 1, Books, Group 2, Pamphlets, etc., 1936, New Series, Volume 33, Number 8, has an entry for Oddities of the News by Dic “Lacalzo”, which was a misspelling of Loscalzo. Loscalzo produced a limited number of strips that were signed Dic. Editor & Publisher yearbooks credit “Alex Boon” in 1937, “Al Boon” in 1939 and “Al Blum” in 1942 for the remaining Oddities strips. Who’s Who of American Comic Books credits Blum on the strip, Oddities in [sic] the News, and said “Alex Boon” was a pen name. I believe Blum produced the Oddities strips after Loscalzo’s departure.

In the 1940 census, Blum lived in Manhattan at 60 East 94 Street. He was a freelance artist who had eight years of elementary education. His move to New York was explained in the Herald Statesman:

Then early in the depression, when, as he says, “things were awkward for artists”, Mr. Blum became art director of Classic Magazine, a position he held until after World War II.
Blum signed his World War II draft card April 26, 1945. His address did not change and employer was “Iger Eisner, 204 East 44”. Blum referred to the partners even though Eisner and Iger had parted ways in 1939.
In 1946, Blum illustrated a version of Puss in Boots by Ruth A. Roche, who worked in Jerry Iger’s studio.

Blum was one of several artists who worked on the Illustrated Classics series which was published in newspapers. Blum’s Alice in Wonderland was serialized in four parts with each part consisting of four full-pages. Each page held the equivalent of four comic book pages, so the adaptation was a total of 63 pages of art plus a page about the author. The New York Post published its weekend color comics on Saturday; Alice appeared on June 21 and 28, and July 5 and 12, 1947. The comic book version used 44 of the 64 pages. Classics Illustrated: A Cultural History has a chapter devoted to Blum, “Alex A. Blum: ‘A Prince of a Man’”.

Blum’s comic book career ended around 1961; many of his comic book credits are here.

The Herald Statesman said Blum and his wife moved to Rye, New York in 1946. They bought a 275-year-old barn (287 Rye Beach Avenue) and converted it into their home and studio.

The artists held informal art classes starting in the mid-1950s.

Who’s Who in American Art (1953) had an entry for Blum. 
Blum, Alex A.— Etcher, P.
287 Rye Beach Ave., Rye, N.Y.
B. Budapest, Hungary. Feb. 7, 1889. Studied: NAD; Cincinnati A. Acad. Awards: prize. NAD. 1924. Work: MMA; LC; Yale Univ.; BMFA; Weslcyan Col.
Blum passed away September 5, 1969. His death was reported in the Rye Chronicle (New York), September 11.
Alexander Blum, 80, a noted artist, of 287 Rye Beach Ave., died on Friday at United Hospital.
Mr. Blum, was born in Budapest Feb. 7, 1889, the son of the late Alexander, and Rose Blum.
He moved to Cincinnati with his family before he was 10. He had won three prizes in art by the time he was 13 and attended the Cincinnati Art Academy. He moved to New York and became a reporter on the old New York World and attended the National Academy of Design at night.
In Boston he continued as a daytime reporter and did free lance etching at night. He and his wife the former Miss Helen Abrahams, moved to Great Neck, Long Island where the artist became art director of Classic Magazine until after World War II.
Mr. and Mrs. Blum moved to Rye 23 years ago in order that the artist might paint in quiet, scenic surroundings.
In addition to his wife, Mr. Blum is survived by a daughter, Mrs. Audrey Bossert of Pleasantville; a son, Robert Blum of Deerfield, Ill.; five grandchildren and a sister, Mrs. Hedwig Bleier of New York.

—Alex Jay


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Monday, March 30, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Dic

Dominick “Dic” Loscalzo was born in New York, New York, on March 5, 1896, as recorded on his World War I draft card.

In the 1900 U.S. Federal Census, Loscalzo was the third of four children born to Leonardo, a peddler, and Theresa, both Italian emigrants. They resided in Manhattan, New York City at 333 East 11th Street, which was their address in the 1910 census. Shortly after the 1910 census they moved to Brooklyn.

By the mid-1910s, Loscalzo was a cartoonist. His advertisement appeared in Cartoons Magazine, April 1916.

Loscalzo signed his World War I draft card on June 5, 1917. He lived at 296 Bergen Street, Brooklyn and would remain there into the 1940s. Loscalzo worked at a cartoon company located at “354 40th St. New York City”. His description was short and slender with brown eyes and dark brown hair. He was inducted March 28, 1918 and honorably discharged December 24, 1918.

His early life was recounted in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle (New York), August 4, 1918.
Upton Cartoonist a Former Newsboy 
Dominick Loscalzo of Brooklyn, Now Art Director of Camp Paper. 
Started Life as a Bootblack. 
Enthusiastic Over Army Work—Surprises Friends with Skill as Boxer.
Camp Upton, L. I., August 2—A self-made man has been discovered in this cantonment and he is a Brooklyn boy. He made himself known on his arrival a few weeks ago by furnishing the camp paper with a cartoon which caused considerable comment. The cartoonist turned out to be Dominick Loscalzo, newspaper boy, bootblack, cartoonist, art director of the Modern Cartoon Service and now Private Loscalzo.
Dominick is 24 years old, and lived with his parents at 296 Bergen street when he was drafted in June. Besides his mother and father, he has three brothers and a sister. He was born in New York City of Italian descent and received a public school education. About six years ago his parents came to Brooklyn to live and have been at the Bergen street address ever since. When Dominick was a small boy he started his business career by shining shoes in front of a Manhattan hotel. He later sold newspapers in Park. Row. He spent hours in the Public Libraries studying. Loscalzo admired cartoons and one day made up his mind that this would be his life’s work. 
Although Loscalzo is in the Army he is still a cartoonist. He has become associated with the camp paper, Trench and Camp, and now holds the position of art director of that paper. The young soldier has appeared on almost every vaudeville circuit in the country and his cartoons have usually made a hit. 
When Dominick attended Public School 19, in Manhattan he took an active part in school athletics. He has won twenty-five medals for running.
Several days ago when scheduled to give an exhibition in one of the Y. M. C. A. huts, Frank Daily issued a challenge to box any man at 124 pounds. 
Daily was about to give up looking for anyone to fight, and the crowd seemed disappointed, when Dominick, who claims that he wanted the boys to have some fun, came strolling out on the platform and announced that he would meet young Daily for two rounds. Dominick, who is very small and weighs only about 104 pounds, was advised by his friends.to get off the stage, while others who were looking for fun, advised him to stay. He stayed, went the two rounds to the surprise of all, and gave Daily a merry time. The contest was a draw.
Dominick is now spending all his spare time on art work for the camp paper and hopes to furnish the sheet with some good cartoons. When asked what he thought of soldiering, he replied it was the greatest life in the world and that if every young man in the city took the exercise given to soldiers, there would be few cases of sickness.
The Board of Elections of the City of New York voter enrollments said Loscalzo was a Democrat in 1919.

In the 1920 census, Loscalzo’s occupation was newspaper cartoonist. His Modern Cartoon Service was listed in the 1922 Queens Copartnership and Corporation Directory. Loscalzo advertised his service in magazines such as Film Fun, May 1922; Boys’ Life, June 1923;
 Popular Mechanics, August 1923; and Popular Science, September 1923.

Loscalzo had an entry in the Catalogue of Copyright Entries, Part 1, Group 2, Pamphlets, etc., 1922, New Series, Volume 19, Number 2.
Loscalzo (Dick) [3344,3345 
Cartoon stunts, cover-title, [8] p. illus. 8vo. © Dec. 15, 1921; 2 c. awl aff. Dec. 28,1921; aff. Jan. 19, 1922; A 656110.
Complete course of cartoon stunts. Brooklyn, Modern cartoon service, 1921. cover-title, 10 loose 1. illus. 4to. [Text parallel with binding] © Dec. 15, 1921; 2 c. Dec. 28, 1921; aft. Jan. 19, 1922; A 656111.
© Modern cartoon service, Brooklyn.
A 1924 Catalog of Copyright Entries had two entries for him:
Loscalzo (Dominick) Brooklyn. 088
Razzberries. [Comic cartoon drawing in four sections showing boy masquerading in girls’ bathing suit and wig] © 1 c. Mar. 4, 1924 ; G 70891.
Loscalzo (Dominick) Brooklyn. 9392
Why don’t you broadcast it? [Cartoon strip drawing of man talking to small boy asleep in chair] © 1 c. June 9, 1924; G 71668.
Apparently, both were not published. Later, Loscalzo adopted the name “Dic”.

The Fourth Estate, December 18, 1926, reported Loscalzo’s latest work. 

Does Golf Comic Strips
Dic Loscalzo, of Brooklyn, N. Y., creator of On the Links, formerly of the Wheeler-Nicholson Syndicate, is the author of a new book of golf comic strips, On the Links, which has just been issued by the Associated Feature Service. The volume contains 48 large pages and an article on The Folly of Trying Too Hard, by Walter Hagen, the golf champion. A write-up of Dic’s rise from newsboy to cartoonist appears in the January issue of Cartoons Magazine.
(Does anyone have this issue of Cartoons to share?)

Loscalzo illustrated two children’s books by Elizabeth Lucy Gallagher: Music Rhymes (1927) and Musical Nonsense Primer for All Children Under Eighty (1928).

The 1930 census said Loscalzo was a freelance artist.

The Catalogue of Copyright Entries, Part 1, Group 2, Pamphlets, etc., 1931, New Series, Volume 28, Number 10, had an entry for Loscalzo’s book on cartooning.

[Loscalzo (Dominick)] Fundamentals of cartooning by Dic. © Oct. 6, 1931; 2 c. and aff. Oct. 7; AA 79825; Associated features, New York. 37622

Loscalzo’s surname was misspelled in the Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 1, Group 2, Pamphlets, Etc. 1936, New Series, Volume 33, Number 8.
[Lacalzo] (Dic) Oddities of the news. © July 23, 1936; A 74650; General features syndicate, inc., New York. 29174
Some of the strips were credited to and signed “Dic”. Other strips had the byline “Al Boon” who, most likely, was Alex Blum, an Eisner and Iger Studio artist. Oddities of the News ran from March 19, 1937 to February 25, 1938.

It’s not known when Loscalzo joined the Eisner and Iger Studio; Loscalzo’s name is not listed in the studio personnel at Who’s Who of American Comic Books. On Loscalzo’s World War II draft card, his employer was “Izner & Iger, 202 E 44th St, NYC”. Although Eisner and Iger parted ways in 1939, that was the business name Loscalzo remembered.

In the 1940 census, cartoonist Loscalzo and his father were the only occupants at 296 Bergen Street in Brooklyn.

Images from Chimpsey at Play, art by Dic Loscalzo

In 1944 Loscalzo illustrated the children’s book, Chimpsey at Play, which was written by Ruth A. Roche, whose employer was Jerry Iger. Action Play Books was one of Iger’s publishing ventures. Chimpsey was published in 1945, probably after Loscalzo had passed away on January 31, 1945, in the Bronx, New York, according to the New York, New York Death Index at Ancestry.com.

—Alex Jay


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Saturday, March 28, 2015


Herriman Saturday

Saturday, September 19 1908 --The LA Examiner continues to beat the drum against Patterson, Eldridge and Wilson, the so-called "Solid Three" who are the chief engineers in a bond-fixing scandal.


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Friday, March 27, 2015


Sci-Friday starring Connie

Connie, August 28 1938, courtesy of Cole Johnson. 
Follow the Connie story every Friday here on Stripper's Guide.

This is the final sci-fi Connie story we have available from Cole Johnson. If anyone out there can contribute scans of another complete Connie story (later than 3/26/1939), or can offer another sci-fi strip to take its place on Sci-Fridays, I'd be delighted and grateful to hear from you! Note that we elitists at Stripper's Guide do not generally use digital microfilm material here on Stripper's Guide, so we would need sharp 300-600 dpi scans from newspaper tearsheets or syndicate proofs. 


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Thursday, March 26, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Tap Goodenough

Mason Tappan “Tap” Goodenough was born in Boston, Massachusetts, on March 31, 1910, according to the Massachusetts birth records at Ancestry.com. Tappan was his mother’s maiden name.

In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Goodenough was barely three weeks old when the census was enumerated. He was the only child of Harold and Helen. He, his parents and maternal grandmother resided in Boston at 120 Foster Street. Goodenough would live there into the 1930s.

The Boston Herald, January 17, 1926, named the honor roll students, including Goodenough, at Huntington High School. The school swim team was pictured in the Herald, January 27, 1928. Goodenough was the manager and already known by his nickname, Tap.

Information regarding his art training has not been found. A 1930 Boston city directory listed Goodenough as a cartoonist. The following year’s listing said he was in the art department at “5 Winthrop Sq”, which was the address of the Boston American newspaper.

The General Features Syndicate syndicated a number of strips in 1937. Among them was The Sports Parade which was copyrighted by Chuck Thorndike. Editor & Publisher syndicate directories have these credits for The Sports Parade: Tap Goodenough in 1937 and 1938; Tap Goodnuff in 1939; Taper Tapper in 1940; and S.C. Begg in 1942. Apparently Goodenough produced the strip for the first three or four years.

Goodenough also continued George Brenner’s Bing and His Buddies


In 1939, Goodenough resided at 35 Pinckney Street and was an artist at “Amer-Rec-Adv”.

Goodenough’s address was the same in the 1940 census which said he was a newspaper artist. The New Hampshire Marriage Records, at Ancestry.com, recorded the marriage of Goodenough and Viola Rennert on December 28, 1940, in Franconia. In 1942, Goodenough lived at 41 Revere in Boston and continued as an artist with the same employer.

In addition to artwork, Goodenough was also writing a column. The Portsmouth Herald (New Hampshire), July 6, 1942, reported the new publication, The New England Outdoor Editor, that had “…a masthead…from a sketch by ‘Tap’ Goodenough, Boston American artist-columnist.”

During World War II, Goodenough enlisted in the army on February 19, 1943. While the 1943 directory said he was an artist, the Herald, February 12, 1943, referred to him as “Boston ski columnist”. Subsequent directories listed his occupation as reporter.

Richard Shaughnessy and Goodenough were co-authors of Skeet and Trapshooting (1950).

The Bennington Banner (Vermont), March 7, 1972, called Goodenough “the dean of American ski writers.”

The Herald, June 28, 1975, reported the death of Goodenough’s mother and said she was survived by her son “…of Yarmouth Port, a former sportswriter for the Boston Record-American and the present outdoor editor for the Quincy Patriot Ledger of Quincy”.

Goodenough passed away October 5,1992, in Bedford, Massachusetts, according to the Massachusetts Death Index.

—Alex Jay


Its pretty obvious, based on their styles posted here and elsewhere, that Goodenough trained under Chuck Thorndike, who you profiled here last June 17th.
Everything I find on Goodenough tells me he seldom, if ever, left New England, so its likely Thorndike taught a class in Boston, or Tap went to Silvermine Connecticut in 1935 or earlier. I'm ruling out just book learning since Chuck gained a copyright on one strip.
Why or how he inherited Brenner's gig is curious. Maybe this whole syndicate is the result of a class project :)
More later today on Goodenough's family and career that I pulled earlier.
If I may, here’s some of his other career sidelines for this Jack-of-all-Trades to add to your awesome research:
Newspaper articles have him in Huntington High School at least from January 17, 1926 to 03/03/1929, so he graduated at 19. During this time, and earlier, besides making the honor roll and being on the swim team, as you note, he won a marksman medal at Camp Skylark in Billerica (08/30/1925), provided a character sketch at a talent 'contest' the Brighton Men's Club (03/18/1926), won $5 at school for the essay"Why I Want to Go To College" (03/27/1927 and was chosen to compete in the finals of a speaking contest at school (03/03/1929).
He was first called as a cartoonist in 1930 and in 1931 in the art department of the Boston American.
He’s listed as an employee, primarily an artist, with the Boston American (or Record-American) consistently from 03/13/1932 through 1942, as you note, with a few sideline jobs, including having the first ski cartoon used in The Ski Bulletin, March 23, 1934, in addition to the work he did for The New England Outdoor Editor [as you say].
His Army career is simply awesome! He began with the 87th Mountain Regiment, a ski unit, at Ft Lewis, Washington, and they moved to Camp Hale, CO, in 1942, after which staged a non-landing (??) on Kiska Island in the Aleutians that was abandoned by the Japanese a month earlier. They then returned to Camp Hale and in 1944 were sent to the desert [!!!] at Camp Swift. Texas. And InJanuary, 1945 they were accepted into the 5th Army and became the 10th Mountain Division. In February, they helped flush the Nazis out of The Appenies in Italy.
After the war he is primarily a reporter for the Boston American from 1946 to at least 1959, but he also had a 15 minute radio show on Wednesdays at 6:45PM on WNAC from 01/15/1947 to 04/02/1947 and directed plays for Scituate's Children's Theatre and the Cohasset Dramatic Club and the South Shore Theatre.
He was isted with the Quincy Ledger from at least 1962 to 1977, and at Cape Cod Chamber of Commerce in 1981, though he was reired in 1978.
Along the way he did special reports on golf for the Boston Globe(02/24/1978), fishing for The Hartford Courant (10/08/1978) and a contributing editor (pictures and text) for Skier Magazine (1969).
And there’s a 1950 photo of him on eBay -- http://www.ebay.com/itm/1950-Sports-Writer-Tap-Goodenough-Tennis-Pro-Nancy-Chaffee-Press-Photo-snb4859-/350785745773?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item51ac75b36d
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Wednesday, March 25, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: George Brenner

George Edward Brenner was born in Brooklyn, New York, on September 9, 1908, according to a death notice posted on the RootsWeb message board. Brenner’s birth information was also found in the New York, New York Birth Index at Ancestry.com.

In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Brenner was the oldest of two sons born to Walter and Catherine. His father was sheet-metal worker at a cornice maker. The family resided in Brooklyn at 625 60th Street.

Brenner has not yet been found in the 1920 census. The 1925 New York state census recorded the Brenner family of five in Brooklyn at 959 Franklin Avenue. The census enumerator noted that Brenner attended Alexander Hamilton High School which trained and graduated many art students.

The Brenners home in the 1930 census was 2062 East 29 Street, Brooklyn. Brenner’s father passed away September 19, 1933, as noted in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle, September 20. The New York, New York Death Index, at Ancestry.com, has a Catherine Brenner who passed away March 29, 1945, in Brooklyn.

Who’s Who of American Comic Books 1928–1999 said Brenner’s earliest work appeared in 1936. He produced Biff an’ His Pals which appeared in editor Jerry Iger’s Wow, What a Magazine!. When the magazine folded, after four issues, that year, Brenner joined Iger’s studio which was a partnership with Will Eisner. Brenner’s stay was brief.

Brenner copyrighted his comic strip, Bing and His Buddies, which was listed in the Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 1, Group 2, Pamphlets, Etc. 1936 New Series, Volume 33, Number 8. Below is the entry:
Brenner ([Edward]) Bing and his buddies. © July 23, 1936; A 74649; General features syndicate, Inc., New York. 28159
The strip was published in the weekly Hastings News (Hastings on the Hudson, New York) from March 19, 1937 into 1938. Some strips had Brenner’s byline and a few were signed. His strips appeared from July 2 to November 26, 1937, and on January 28, 1938. I believe Brenner produced just one month of strips.



The syndicate found another artist to continue the strip. The artist was Tap Goodenough, who drew the Sports Parade; his profile appears tomorrow.

According to the 1940 census, Brenner was married to Grace and had a two-year-old son, John. He owned his parent’s Brooklyn home at 2062 East 29th Street. His occupation was freelance artist and he had completed four years of college. According to the Quality Companion (2012), Brenner graduated from Villanova University.

Brenner’s livelihood was in the comic book industry, as an artist and editor, until his death. The Connecticut Death Index, at Ancestry.com, said Brenner passed away September 13, 1952 in Greenwich, Connecticut.

The Quality Companion blog has additional information on Brenner and has been contacted by Brenner’s son, John.

—Alex Jay


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Tuesday, March 24, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Larry Whittington

Carl Lawrence “Larry” Whittington was born in West Virginia around 1903 according to most census records and death information.

In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Whittington was the third of four children born to John, a carpenter, and Naomi. The family resided in Columbus, Ohio, at 387 Loeffler Avenue.

The 1920 census recorded the Whittington family in Cincinnati, Ohio, at 942 Morris Street. Information regarding his education and art training has not been found. Soon, Whittington moved to New York City.

According to American Newspaper Comics (2012), Whittington drew Gene Carr’s Kitty Kildare from October 1 to 8, 1922. For The Evening World (New York), Whittington created Fritzi Ritz which debuted October 9, 1922. His last strip appeared May 13, 1925. The next day’s strip was by Ernie Bushmiller
Fritzi Ritz, from October 9 to December 29, 1922, can be viewed here.


Whittington left the World to produce Mazie the Model for the New York Mirror. The strip saw print from May 25, 1925 to April 14, 1928.

The 1925 New York State census listed cartoonist Whittington in Manhattan, New York City at 228 West 72 Street.

Whittington has not yet been found in the 1930 census. His oldest sister, Ida, was married to Walter Leonhardt whose household included three children and his father-in-law. They resided in Queens, New York, at 4371 164th Street.

Whittington did the drawings for Assen Jordanoff’s Flying and How to Do It which was published by Grosset & Dunlap in 1932.

The Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 1, Group 2. Pamphlets, Etc., 1936 New Series, Volume 33, Number 8, had this entry:

Whittington (Larry) Daisy Daily and Dotty Dawn © July 23, 1936; A 74645; General features syndicate, Inc., New York. 30593
Daisy Daily and Dotty Dawn ran in the weekly Hastings News (Hastings on the Hudson, New York) from March 19, 1937 to March 11, 1938.


According to the 1940 census, Whittington and his mother, a widow, resided at the same address, 4314 214th Place, Queens, New York, as his brother-in-law, Walter. Whittington’s occupation was artist in the art industry.

Whittington passed away November 26, 1942, in Long Island City, New York. His accidental death was reported the same day in the Long Island Star-Journal (New York).

Larry Whittington, 40, of 43-24 214th street, Bayside.
Whittington was struck by a car driven by Bennett Spolan of 118-09 83rd avenue, Kew Gardens, and died a half hour later in St. John’s Hospital, Long Island City. Police absolved Spolan of blame in the accident.
Whittington was widely known as a cartoonist. He originated the comic strip “Fritzy [sic] Ritz,” in the old World in 1922 and later created “Mazie the Model” for the Mirror.
Whittington’s career as a comic strip cartoonist was interrupted 12 years ago when his right arm was broken in an automobile accident but he continued to work as an illustrator and recently did the drawings for a book, “Learn to Fly.”
He lived with a sister, Mrs. Ida Leonhardt. Another sister, Margaret Whittington, lives in Sunnyside.
The New York, New York, Death Index, at Ancestry.com, said he was 39.

* * * * *

Whittington’s sister, Marjorie, was declared, by Flo Ziegfeld, to have perfect feet and the shapeliest legs. Her perfect feet was reported in the Delmarvia Star (Wilmington, Delaware), June 11, 1922, which said Charles Dana Gibson had the same opinion. The front page of the Cincinnati Post, July 31, 1922, included a headline that read, “Cincinnati Girl’s Legs Called Shapeliest”, and said:

…Such is the perfection of Miss Whittington’s legs, such the art with which nature has shaped them, such their faultless symmetry, that Flo Ziegfeld has had them insured for $250,000, as one insures a rare painting to a specimen of Gobelin tapestry…. 
…Miss Whittington, whose quality has been brought to national attention, once was a frail child, according to her relatives. By exercise she remedied physical deficiencies so that she had no difficulty winning an engagement in “Ziegfeld’d Follies.” Formerly she did a pogo stick act in the “Follies,” Now she does a whistling act.
Marjorie Whittington (left) and Dolores Rouse

On occasion, news about Marjorie would also mention her brother as a cartoonist of the Evening World.

The Daily Star (Queens, New York), July 11, 1928, reported the siblings’ involvement in an early morning tragedy.

The body of Hendrick C. Nelson, thirty-five, wealthy sportsman and manager of Gorham’s Fifth avenue, Manhattan, silverware house, was recovered last night from the bottom of Long Island Sound off Whitestone, where Nelson sank early yesterday morning with a cramp during an impromptu bathing party.
Joseph Snyder of Twelfth avenue and Wilfred Lake of Twelfth road, Whitestone, life guards, found Nelson’s body with grappling hooks. Nelson’s fiends spent hours diving for the body and members of the Police Harbor Squad dragged the bottom near where the man drowned.
Nelson wound up a joy ride in the company of Miss Marjorie Whittington, Follies girl who won renown as “the girl with the million dollar legs,” and Miss Whittington’s brother, Larry Whittington, cartoonist an creator of “Mazie the Model.”
The party also included John Sparrell of Cedar lane, Douglaston, and John Wingate of Eighth avenue, Malba. It had been at Wingate’s home and had stopped at Villa Beau Rivage on Merritt road, Whitestone, when several of the group decided to take an early morning dip.
They were in the water only a few minutes when Nelson was seen to double up with a cramp and sink.
Whittington dived for the drowning man and brought him up, but left him after a minute to aid his sister who became hysterical and was also in danger. Nelson sank again and Wingate, grasping his arm, endeavored to swim ashore with him, but became exhausted and was obliged to let go. Help was called.
Later in the day Nelson’s friends joined the police and life guards in grappling for their companion’s body. Miss Whittington and her brother also dove many times in fruitless efforts to locate Nelson.
Wingate posted a reward of $100 for the recovery of the body. When the Whitestone life guards found Nelson, clad only in his underwear and bent double, Miss Whittington collapsed. The others were also attended by a physician.
The Whittington siblings were news again, this time for their misbehavior as reported in the Daily Star, August 15, 1932.
‘Million-Dollar Legs Beauty’ and Brother Arrested After Stabbing Affray
Franklin, Mass., Aug. 15, (U.P.)—Marjorie Whittington, twenty-eight, former Follies girl, and her brother, Lawrence, twenty-five, who gave Flushing, L. I., as their address, are scheduled to appear in District Court here Thursday on charges of disturbing the peace.
They were arrested early Saturday in a cottage at Lake Archer, Wrentham, after the stabbing of one James Gillis, described as a guest at the camp. Gillis suffered only superficial wounds. Miss Whittington and her brother have denied all knowledge of the stabbing.
Wrentham, Mass., Aug, 16.—A young woman who described herself as Marjorie Whittington, former Follies beauty and known to Broadway as “the girl with the million dollar legs,” is under arrest here today on a charge of disturbing the peace and intoxication.
The Marjorie Whittington who was president of the “Follies” Alumnae Association in 1924 formerly lived at 55-11 158th street, Flushing.
According to police, the young woman was taken into custody with a man who said he was Larry Whittington, her brother, after James Gillis of New York City had been stabbed during a fracas in a Lake Archer cottage.
Gillis was taken to the Norwood Hospital, where his condition was reported as favorable. The police allege that the young woman inflicted the stab wound in his back with an icepick.
In November last, Miss Whittington caused the arrest of her brother Lawrence, a cartoonist, on a charge of disorderly conduct, alleging that he had kicked her in the back at Northern boulevard and Farrington street, Flushing.
Whittington was released on bail provided by his sister and later discharged when she failed to appear against him in Flushing Magistrates’ Court.
On November 28, 1931, Miss Whittington was seriously injured in an automobile accident when the car she was-driving skidded and struck an “L” pillar at the Flushing end of the Roosevelt avenue bridge. It was learned at that time that she carried a $50,000 insurance policy against injury to her legs.
At the same time it was reported that a purse containing several valuable pieces of Jewelry and some cash disappeared from the wrecked automobile.
The Boston Herald, (Massachusetts), August 19, 32, said each Whittington was fined twenty-five dollars for disturbing the peace and guilty of drunkenness.

Marjorie passed away in 1957. The Schenectady Gazette (New York), October 25, 1957, carried news of her death.
Ziegfeld Star Dies Suddenly
New York, Oct. 24 (AP)—Marjorie Whittington, 55, whose legs once were insured by the late Flo Ziegfeld for a million dollars, collapsed and died yesterday in Grand Central Station.
The former star of the Ziegfeld Follies in the 1920s was identified today as the woman who collapsed on a subway platform in the station. Relatives were located through a telephone number found in her effects. She had been living with friends.
The Actors Fund said it was taking over funeral arrangements.

—Alex Jay


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Monday, March 23, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Jerry Iger

Samuel Maxwell “Jerry” Iger was born on August 22, 1903. The birth date is from the Social Security Death Index. Bob Andelman’s book, Will Eisner: A Spirited Life (2005) said Iger was born in Idabel, Oklahoma. However, federal census records list New York state as Iger’s birthplace. The 1910 U.S. Federal Census said Iger’s father emigrated in 1902 and his mother in 1903. The Iger family moved to Oklahoma sometime between 1905 and 1910.

The 1905 New York State Census recorded Iger in Manhattan, New York City, at 167 Suffolk Street. (Jack Kirby grew up on this street and, years later, would work at Iger’s studio.) He was the third of four children born to Jacob and Rosie. Andelman said Iger was the youngest child. His father worked in the garment trade. Iger’s parents, older sister, Gussie, and brother, Joseph, were Austrian emigrants. Andelman said Iger’s father was Australian.

According to the 1910 census, the Iger family resided on Main Street in Idabel, Oklahoma, where Iger’s father was a peddler. In Andelman’s book, Iger had polio according to nephew, Arthur Iger.

The family returned to New York City. The 1915 New York state census said the “Eiger” family lived at 106 McKibben Street in Brooklyn. Iger’s father was a department store employee. On September 12, 1918, Iger’s father signed his World War I draft card. His address was 332 Sumner in Brooklyn. He did pressing at Blatt Brothers & Love.

In the 1920 census, Iger family’s address was unchanged. Teenager Iger was a newspaper cartoonist. Information regarding his education and art training has not been found. Joe Brancatelli, in the World Encyclopedia of Comics (1976), said New York City native Iger “broke directly into the field as a news cartoonist for the New York American in 1925.”

The New York, New York, Marriage Index at Ancestry.com said Iger married on October 14, 1928, in Brooklyn. I think his wife, Louise Hirsch, was also the cartoonist who produced the strip, Tessie Tish with the panel, Charlie Chirps. American Newspaper Comics (2012) said the strip appeared from December 22, 1927 to July 19, 1928. Around the same time, Iger’s strip, The Gang, ran from September 16, 1927 to June 28, 1928. Both strips were distributed by Paramount Newspaper Features and reprinted years later.

Standard Union (Brooklyn, NY) 11/17/1928

Louise and Iger resided with her parents in Brooklyn at 2244 East 14th Street, as recorded in the 1930 census, which spelled the surname as Eiger. He was a cartoonist in advertising, and she was unemployed.

In 1936 Iger edited the comics magazine Wow, What a Magazine!. It lasted four issues but one of the contributors was Will Eisner who would become Iger’s partner in an art studio. According to Who’s Who of American Comic Books 1928–1999, the Eisner and Iger Studio was also known as Syndicated Features Corporation [but that's been pretty well proven untrue -- Allan]. When the partnership ended in 1939, each of them formed a studio under his own name.

American Newspaper Comics said Iger’s comic strip output included Bobby (1938), Pee Wee (1938 to 1939), and Uncle Otto (1938; written by Iger and drawn by Will Eisner as Carl Heck). Iger may have drawn Little Buddy which ran from March 4 1935 into 1939.

Magazine cartoonist Iger lived alone at 310 East 44th Street, Manhattan, in the 1940 census enumeration. According to WillEisner.com, Iger had been “embroiled in a divorce.” The census said his highest level of education was the eighth grade, and, in 1939, he worked 52 weeks and earned five-thousand dollars. 
The New York Times, August 13, 1942, said Iger moved to 246 East 46th Street in Manhattan. 

Action Play-Books was a publishing imprint owned by Iger. The first book appeared in 1937, then seven years later, twelve books followed.

Treasure Book of Puzzles (1937) by Emery I. Gondor
Indian Legends by Ruth A. Roche, illustrated by David B. Icove
Bobby’s Diary by Ruth A. Roche, illustrated by David B. Icove
Adventures of Peter Pupp by Ruth A. Roche, illustrated by David B. Icove
Pee Wee and the Sneezing Elephant by Ruth A. Roche, illustrated by David B. Icove (the original art is here)
Snowy, the Traveling Snowman by Ruth Burman, illustrated by Elsa Garratt
The Grasshopper Man by Erwin Scharf
Happy-Go-Lucky by Marjorie Romyns
The Big, Big Zoo by Lester Kohs
Joey Jeep by George Arthur Hornby, illustrated by Bertram Goodman
Rumpy by Novo and Stuart, illustrators
The ABC’s in Rhyme by Ruth A. Roche, illustrated by David B. Icove
Chimpsey  at Play by Ruth A. Roche, illustrated by Dic Loscalzo

An overview of Iger’s comic book work is hereAmerican Newspaper Comics said the panel, Court Chuckles, was signed with one of Iger’s pseudonym, “S.M. Regi”, and was syndicated by Iger’s Phoenix Features beginning in 1948.

In the Times, May 1, 1954, Iger signed a business lease in the building at 113 West 57th Street. 

Iger retired around the late 1950s. He resided in Sunnyside in the borough of Queens, New York City. He was mentioned in the local paper, The Leader-Observer, in its column, “It’s Flying Time”. On December 19, 1974, columnist H.C. Beck wrote:
Had the extreme pleasure Thanksgiving Day to meet world famous cartoonist Jerry Iger, who began his drawing career at age 15, for several large publications. Among Jerry’s originals were “Pet Wee,” “Sheena of the Jungle” and many other popular cartoon strips. By the way, Jerry, how’s about doing “Theodore.” Kindly bear it in mind.
The September 4, 1975 column said:
A thank you note at this writing to world-famous cartoonist Jerry Iger for the autographed copy of Lincoln Savings Bank’s beautifully illustrated brochure which was drawn by Jerry, who is the originator of Sheena of the Jungle and also the cartoon strip Pee Wee...
About three months later, in the December 11 edition, Beck said:
Had an extremely pleasant Thanksgiving Day as guest of Ruth Mundy, lovely star of Stage, Screen and TV at her home in Elmhurst, N.Y. Other guests included Patricia-Ann Kelly, the inimitable Jerry Iger world-famous cartoonist, and Mr. and Mrs. Tom Sadler of Elmhurst. After a delicious turkey dinner with all the trimmings, Mr. Iger entertained the guests with illustrations and humorous stories reverting to his heyday when he had been the creator of the cartoon strip titled “Sheena of the Jungle” and another cartoon called “Pee Wee.”
Will Eisner said he created Sheena.

Iger passed away September 5, 1990, according to the Social Security Death Index, which said his last residence was Sunnyside.

Further reading: Alter Ego, #21, February 2003: “The Iger Comics Kingdom

—Alex Jay


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Sunday, March 22, 2015


Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics


Yea! Jim is back... but for how long?
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Saturday, March 21, 2015


Herriman Saturday

Saturday, September 19 1908 -- The LA Examiner, and cartoonist Herriman, have been concentrating on this bond scandal lately, but the city and county are under investigation for hanky-panky on a number of fronts. Everything is coming to a head now, as a combined case has been brought before the grand jury.


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Friday, March 20, 2015


Sci-Friday starring Connie

Connie, August 21 1938, courtesy of Cole Johnson. 
Follow the Connie story every Friday here on Stripper's Guide.

This is the final sci-fi Connie story we have available from Cole Johnson. If anyone out there can contribute scans of another complete Connie story (later than 3/26/1939), or can offer another sci-fi strip to take its place on Sci-Fridays, I'd be delighted and grateful to hear from you! Note that we elitists at Stripper's Guide do not generally use digital microfilm material here on Stripper's Guide, so we would need sharp 300-600 dpi scans from newspaper tearsheets or syndicate proofs. 


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Thursday, March 19, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Bill Seidcheck

William Randolph “Bill” Seidcheck was born in Illinois on May 31, 1906. His birthplace was recorded in census records and his birth date is from the Department of Veterans Affairs Death File at Ancestry.com.

In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, Seidcheck was the second of three children born to Louis, a dentist, and Laura, a German emigrant. They resided in Hinsdale, Illinois at 146 North Monroe Street.

Downers Grove, Illinois, was Seidcheck’s hometown in the 1920 census. He lived on Odgen Avenue with his parents and four siblings.

Seidcheck has not been found in the 1930 census. His parents and five siblings remained in Downers Grove.

In 1934, Seidcheck copyrighted the Adventures of Spangola, which might have been comics-related. Seidcheck copyrighted and sold his comic strip, Betty Brighteyes, to the General Features Syndicate in 1936. The weekly newspaper Hastings News (Hastings on the Hudson, New York) published it beginning March 19, 1937. The strip’s run ended March 11, 1938.


Seidcheck’s father passed away March 9, 1938 in Chicago.

Seidcheck, his mother and two younger brothers were in Los Angeles, California, as recorded in the 1940 census. Their address was 1966 North Van Ness Avenue. In 1935, Seidcheck was a resident in New York City. His highest level of education was the fourth year of high school. Seidcheck’s current occupation was an artist in toy manufacturing although he was unemployed for the past 58 weeks.

During World War II, Seidcheck was in the army. He enlisted September 28, 1942 and was discharged September 7, 1945. His brother, Louis, an army private, passed January 4, 1945. His mother as listed as next of kin and her address was 2486 Cheremoya Street, Hollywood. She passed away May 13, 1970 in Los Angeles.

Seidcheck passed away June 4, 1973 according to his military death file. The Social Security Death Index said he resided in Honolulu, Hawaii. Seidcheck was buried in Hollywood, California.

—Alex Jay


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Wednesday, March 18, 2015


The Comic Strip Series of General Features Syndicate

Yesterday we discussed the obscure General Features Syndicate in, um, general. Today we'll talk about the features themselves. All the strips discussed below ran from March 19 1937 to February 25 1938 (a few actually appeared slightly later, but only because the full page of strips got a bit disrupted late in the run).

Of course, the star of the bunch is The Little Major, by none other than Bob Kane. Kane, of course, would just a few years later create that comic book icon, Batman.

First General Features Syndicate page, 3/19/37

Couple interesting things about The Little Major. First, I was unexpectedly impressed at Kane's humorous cartooning style. He shows a real adeptness at it, which was certainly absent, in my opinion, in his illustrative style. I gather from Kane's memoirs that in this period he considered bigfoot cartooning to be his strong suit, and I certainly agree with him based on this strip. In fact I'd say that Kane might have made a successful career in this genre had not Batman relieved him of the need. His gag writing, on the other hand, is pretty clunky. To his credit, he doesn't seem to just reuse old gag lines, but maybe he should have. He certainly shows no gift for writing a punchy gag.

General Features Syndicate page, 4/16/1937

Other interesting thing about The Little Major is that I wonder if this could be a poke in the ribs to Major Malcolm Wheeler-Nicholson. At about the same time Kane was drawing this strip, Wheeler-Nicholson was one of his bosses in the comic book world. As Kane relates in his memoirs, the Major sweet-talked him into doing a lot of work that he never got paid for, and maybe this strip was Kane's little stab at revenge.

One additional odd point about The Little Major, and one that we'll be revisiting for many of these features. The annual E&P listings for the General Features Syndicate line-up seemed to not be able to settle on a creator's name. In the case of The Little Major, Bob Kane was credited each year until 1942, when someone named Thomas Fogarty got the nod. This might simply be a typo, or Kane might have finally told the folks at General to quit using his name to sell reprints. I have no idea who this Thomas Fogarty might be, other than a pen-name picked from a hat.

General Features Syndicate page, 7/16/1937

Bob Kane was a complete unknown in 1937, but that wasn't true of Larry Whittington, who contributed Daisy Daily and Dotty Dawn. Whittington was the original creator behind the Fritzi Ritz comic strip, though he had lost the job to Ernie Bushmiller less than three years into the run. Whittington being the one creator in the bunch with at least a slight claim to fame, his strip usually got pride of place at the top of the page.

Though Whittington's brief heyday was long over, his ability to draw cute girls was undimmed. The gags in Daisy Daily and Dotty Dawn were nothing memorable, but the art was still top-notch. The strip is definitely the most attractive of the line-up by far. Be sure to read Alex Jay's Ink-Slinger Profile of Larry Whittington, coming soon -- the guy had quite an interesting life!

Moving on, we have Betty Brighteyes by Bill Seidcheck. This strip is one of those that trades on the bubble-headed blonde stereotype, but the art is good, and the gags, though showing a bit of grey hair,  are well-staged. Seidcheck has no other credits of which I'm aware, but his art and gag-writing were definitely pro level. Alex Jay will be telling us more about him in an Ink-Slinger profile, as well.

General Features Syndicate page, 9/10/1937

Moving on again, we get a sports strip (actually most often a panel with multiple vignettes) called The Sports Parade. It's tough to offer a good sense of the quality of the art, because the reproduction on this feature is pretty uniformly awful. Almost every strip has large dropouts along the bottom. At first I thought this was the fault of bad press work at Hastings News, because The Sports Parade usually ran at the bottom of the page. But I found the strip exhibiting the same problem even when it was run at the top of the page. Apparently the more intricate linework of the strip, or some other quality of it, had the fellas in the print shop totally stymied.

The content of The Sports Parade is non-fiction, offering 'amazing' facts about various sports figures. Sometimes the panel veers into Ripley's freak territory, but more generally it offers impressive statistics and portraits of the greats of yesteryear.

The creator of The Sports Parade is given only as 'Tap'. Based on the name, this could be Melvin Tapley, a cartoonist who worked for many years in the black newspapers, often the Amsterdam News. He sometimes signed cartoons simply as 'Tap' and the style is not too dissimilar to his. If that guess is right, this is a rare early appearance of a black cartoonist in a mainstream newspaper. However, there are a few clues that are at odds with that identification.

General Features Syndicate page, 11/26/1937

First is the copyright notice of 1936, in which Chuck Thorndike is given credit. To me this art does not at all resemble Thorndike's, but it is interesting that his name comes up. As I discussed yesterday, I believe that Van Tine Features and General Features Syndicate are somehow closely related, but this is the only creative name the two share (Thorndike was the artist on Van Tine's Follies of the Great).

Finally, there is my opinion that the art on The Sports Parade does not so much look like Mel Tapley's or Chuck Thorndike's, but rather like the work of Jerry Iger. Iger had some pretty noticeable quirks, and I see some of them here -- the dead round eyes and the outlined balloon lettering being the most telltale. Maybe Iger did the cartoony bits, and someone else did the more illustrative style portraits? I hate to bring Iger's name into it, though, as that is quite a can of worms. Why would Iger be working for this outfit when he was busy with his own shop? Could he have been reselling them material already used by Eisner-Iger on other projects?

2/11/38, a few strips missing in this edition

Looking at the E&P syndicate directories, the credits for The Sports Parade are an interesting but uninformative mess. In 1937 and 1938, the creator was listed as Tap Goodenough (more about that last name shortly), then Tap Goodnuff in 1939, Taper Tapper in 1940, and S.C. Begg in 1942. All except for S.C. Begg are obviously variations on the same pseudonym, but that Begg fellow is a complete mystery. Another pick-it-out-of-a-hat creator name, like The Little Major got in 1942?

Moving on to the next strip, we have Bing and his Buddies. This one is a turkey that works the very well trodden subject of wiseacre kids. If you know Freckles and his Friends, or Just Kids, or Reg'lar Fellers, you know what you're in for here, except those strips are positively Shakespearean in their profundity by comparison.

2/18/1938, a few strips missing, and one strip printed separately

In the original 1936 copyright notice, Bing and his Buddies was credited to Edward Brenner. However, the strip itself ran under a byline of Goodenough, which you'll recall from the E&P listings for The Sports Parade. A more detailed review of the strips reveals that Mr. Brenner did indeed sign a couple of the early strips, and the style was different than the later ones signed Goodenough.

Goodenough seems likely to be (another) pseudonym of Tap, or whoever was the creator of The Sports Parade. The styles match pretty well. Of course, the E&P listings once again serve mainly to confuse. In 1937 the creator was given as Tap, which makes for a good start. But in 1938 the creator is listed as Ed Brennon, then in 1939 Edward Brennen, then Edward Brennan in 1940 and Ed Brennan in 1942. Why they had so much trouble with Brenner/Brennan's name is anyone's guess, but considering he only produced about 3 or 4 strips at the beginning of the run, why in the world were they offering him credit at all?

I believe 2/25/1938 represents the last new material the syndicate distributed

Bringing up the rear, we have Oddities of the News, another of the ubiquitous copies of Ripley, of which at least one was seemingly a requirement for every syndicate. This feature was credited and signed by someone named Al Boon. That's not a name that means anything to me, so let's check our secondary sources.

According to the 1936 copyright notice, the creator was Dic Lacalzo. Also a name that means nothing to me; I have someone signing a 1926 Wheeler-Nicholson strip 'Dic', and there was a Dic Loscalzo who drew terrific cartoon drawings for Ruth Roche's children's book Chimpsey at Play (1945), in a book series called Action Play-Books closely associated with our pal Jerry Iger.

Hastings News played catch-up, printing these strips on 3/4 and 3/11/1938

I guess it doesn't matter much, because that's the only reference we have to a name anything like that. In the E&P yearbooks, we have Alex Boon in 1937, Al Boon in 1939 and Al Blum in 1942 (the strip was only listed for those three years). That last one had me wondering if this was actually Blumey (Abraham Blumenfeld), who wrote Van Tine's Don't Laugh - Superstitious Beliefs. However, Alex Jay went off in a different direction with this alphabet soup of names, and came up with at least an equally possible scenario for the actual creator. You'll have to wait for him to weigh in later, though.

Well, that's it for my overview of the General Features Syndicate comic strips. Stay tuned for Alex Jay's Ink-Slinger Profiles on a number of these folks. Before I close, a final note of thanks to Art Lortie, who brought this exciting discovery to my attention. Thanks Art!

Oh, you're very welcome.
FWIW Dept. - I ran across that Bob Kane / Thomas Fogarty listing when I pulled all the strips and looked up references> But I came to the conclusion Fogarty was real and not a Kane pseudonym [or fake].
Besides the famous Thomas Fogarty (1873 - 1938), who this is obviously NOT, I have a New York Times obituary and 1934 class listing for the Free Art Schools of the National Academy of Design in New York that hints at his ID. In 1934 he earned Honorable Mention in Drawing Room Life (Day class - figure) and later taught at the Pratt Institute.
Other graduates of Nat'l Academy of Design include [at different times] Alex Blum, Henry Boltinoff, Carl Burgos, Irwin Hasen, Tom Hickey, Everett Kinstler, Irv Novick, Carl Pfeufer, Mac Raboy, Frank Robbins, Al Stenzel and George Tuska.
His obituary is at obituary at http://www.nytimes.com/1989/04/15/obituaries/thomas-fogarty-jr-painter-73.html
I'll send you the clipping from the award presentation.
Oh -- I forgot to mention that I think OUR Tom Fogarty is the son of the more famous one.
Also from my notes -- there is a real writer named Tap Goodenough, who did articles on skiing beginning in 1939 and had a later book on Skeet Shooting. He seems to have settled in Massachusetts in the '60s doing work for the Quincy Ledger, which is when I stopped trying to track him.
Art, thank you for the invaluable additional info. I gotta say, if we were in a bar you could have won quite a few drinks off me claiming that Tap Goodenough was a real person. Not only is the guy's name really odd, he draws just like Jerry Iger (and that's not a compliment)!

But Alex Jay assures me that he is finding biographical info about this guy too, so bottom's up I guess!

Great! As for Iger's appearance here, could it not be that this set was made up of creator's unsold presentation sets? As an editor I know that when you ask artists to submit something they almost come up with something the did not sell years before that first. The run seems to be short enought to enable that. And if any of them took off they could always have someone else continue it, right?
Hi Ger --
Well, the artist that looks to me to be a dead ringer for Jerry Iger, is apparently REALLY a person named Tap Goodenough. I gather he just shared a style with Jerry Iger (maybe they took the same cartooning correspondence course?). I wrote my post assuming that was a pen-name. Evidently not. Alex Jay will be following up soon with an Ink-Slinger Profile.

Best, Allan
It looks like Dic Lacalzo, the copyright holder for Oddities of the News, is really Dic[k] Loscalzo, who I can find books by and newspaper ads for ["send me a photo and for 25 cents I'll send you a charicature] back to 1916. Alex lists in his bio of Jerry Iger as an artist; that book received newspaper reviews for those who seem to know him. He might have been an art editor for something called Yankee Humor. I find nothing personal about him, though.
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