Thursday, December 12, 2019

 

Obscurity of the Day: Idea Payoff





With such a plethora of obscure features down at the bottom end of Jeffrey Lindenblatt's 1977 newspaper comics index, I had lots of research topics on which to follow up. Among them is a feature that ran for over forty years and in the process spawned two syndicates. If that seems like a feature that wouldn't be obscure, think again.

Jerry Langell came up with a pretty good idea for a feature in 1948. He'd ask readers to come up with ideas for new inventions, pay them $2 for those he used, and have a cartoonist illustrate them. The creative work was all done for him, and the heart of the gimmick was that he'd alert newspapers when one of their reader's ideas is used so that they can hype it with an article -- newspapers love that sort of "local person cashes in on reading our paper" stuff.

To me this seems like a pretty brilliant idea, but Langell couldn't seem to sell it to one of the big syndicates. Or maybe he thought it was such a flash of brilliance that he didn't want to share the forthcoming treasure with anyone. At any rate, Langell created a new company called Editors Syndicate (which conveniently is a very similar name to a few other reputable firms), and proceeded to market his little one-column panel baby, Idea Payoff. He did attract a modest number of high-profile clients, like the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette which was on hand for the panel's debut on April 5 1948, but the feature really didn't end up taking the world by storm.

Although the art on Idea Payoff was never signed, Langell was willing to give credit, at least in the E&P listings. Lou Darvas was primarily a sports cartoonist who once got a cup of coffee in the strip world with the short-lived feature Haff Nelson. Darvas was credited through 1963, after which no artist was credited. Since the art style never changes, I'm guessing that Darvas may have stayed on but preferred anonimity on this side-job.

For some reason Langell decided in August 1957 to create a new syndication company name for Idea Payoff. Editors Syndicate was dumped, and Allied Feature Syndicate was born. In another unexplained change, the next year he started offering his feature under two different names -- the original, and Here's An Idea. The panel was identical save for the name. In the early 1960s, Langell began to take on additional features, making him a bona fide syndicate with a list of half a dozen or so offerings.

In yet another mysterious change, in 1968 Langell changed the name Idea Payoff to Idea Chaser, while still offering it as well under the alternate title Here's An Idea. Then in 1971 the Here's An Idea title was officially dropped for the E&P listings, but it can still be found in subscribing papers much later.

I wouldn't be surprised if by the mid-1970s the panel was being recycled, because the art was now looking seriously out of step with the times. However, Langell was still able to attract clients. The last paper I can find using the feature is the Indianapolis News, which ran it sporadically as late as 1985. The feature was last offered in E&P in 1989.

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Wednesday, December 11, 2019

 

Jeffrey Lindenblatt's Paper Trends: The Three Hundred for 1978 -- The Rankings

After going through 300 daily papers we have our finger on the pulse of the daily comic strip back in January 1978. First, of the many papers most only had one page of comics plus a few running on the op-ed pages (most popularly, Doonesbury, Dunagin's People, Small Society and Berry’s World). Quite a few papers also ran a few features in the their classified sections (most popular being panels like They’ll Do It Every Time).

There were a total of 220 different strips and panels that ran in the 300 papers. The popularity of these features ranged from 35 that ran in only a single paper (a few were locally produced) to three strips that ran in over 150 papers.

First let’s give the crown to the most popular single panel feature running in 1978. It came down to three contenders. Coming in third was Berry’s World with 60 papers, second was Family Circus with 63 papers and the winner was Dennis the Menace with 80 papers.

Three fairly new strips (debuting in the 1970s) did very well. Hagar the Horrible (1973) had at this time 76 papers putting it in 16th place overall. Frank and Ernest (1972) had 86 papers putting it in 7th place and Doonesbury (1970) had 91 papers putting it in 5th place. Other strips debuting in the 1970’s had a slower start but grew greatly in popularity later. For example, Cathy (1976) only had 19 papers at this time.

A second notable race is for the most popular story strip running in 1978. Before I get to the result one thing has to made clear: if we counted Sunday sections, Prince Valiant would have been either number one or two on this list. The top 6 daily story strips at this time are as follows: coming in at number 6 is a new entry, The Amazing Spider-Man which had 50 papers putting it in 27th place. That’s a pretty phenomenal start. In fifth place is Dick Tracy with 55 papers; this was Chester Gould’s last year on the strip before passing it over to Max Collins and Rick Fletcher placing this strip in 23rd place. It will be interesting when we look back at the 40’s and 50’s to see how much higher this strip will rank. Third and fourth place is a tie between Steve Canyon, the highest rated adventure strip, and Rex Morgan MD, both with 62 papers. Edging out those two with 63 papers is the adventure/comedy strip Alley Oop, which is also the third highest circulation for the NEA syndicate. Number one with 80 papers is the soap opera strip Mary Worth.

Another crown to bestow is for most successful syndicate. This can be determined by counting up the total number of papers that run their combined feature output; in other words, how many 'slots' did their features take up in total for the 300 papers. Here are the top ten, which accounts for all the major syndicates. The second number shows the average papers per feature for the syndicate. You can look at it as a gauge of the syndicate's sales ability, the quality of their features or perhaps as an indication of how many papers had to take a feature for the syndicate to continue offering it :

Syndicate Total ‘Slots’ Avg Slots per Feature
King Features 1154 22.1
Field Enterprises 947 27.8
NEA 766 45.0
United Feature 442 19.2
Chicago Tribune 325 14.1
Universal Press 257 17.1
Register & Tribune 160 17.7
McNaught 114 14.2
Los Angeles Times 67 5.1
Washington Star  35 17.5

The Washington Star Syndicate, the least successful of the major syndicates, would disappear very soon, selling off their last remaining assets to Universal in early 1979. Also, although King Features shows an apparently commanding lead in slots, if we consider that United Feature and NEA are both run through the same parent company by this time, the combination of the two actually hold the crown with 1208 points. Also, NEA's average for slots is a huge outlier because they offered their features under a blanket service (one price gets you everything offered by the syndicate) -- at smaller papers, if they have all those features available the tendency is to run most if not all of them.


The top three strips overall are interesting in that they all came very close to being cancelled by their syndicates early on for having low sales. Coming in at number 3 with 169 papers is a strip that only became successful after the creator had his star inducted into the army, Beetle Bailey. Coming in at number 2 with 191 papers is a strip that had to change from a flapper strip to a family sitcom to become successful, Blondie. The number one strip started as a kind of filler strip but grew in popularity over the years to become the most successful comic strip of all time, Peanuts at this time had 194 papers. That’s almost 2/3 of the newspapers surveyed!

Here is the complete list, ranking the features from most to least papers. If you would like the giant whopper version of this in which each feature is listed with the specific papers in which I found it, send an email to Allan (strippersguide@gmail.com) with subject line "1978 Paper Trends List" and he'll send you a PDF:


Title

Number of Papers

Syndicate

Debut Year

Peanuts

194

United

1950

Blondie

191

King

1930

Beetle Bailey

169

King

1950

Andy Capp

95

Field

1963

Doonesbury

91

Universal

1970

Born Loser

90

NEA

1965

Frank and Ernest

86

NEA

1972

Wizard of Id

85

Field

1964

B.C.

85

Field

1958

Barney Google and Snuffy Smith

81

King

1919

Dennis the Menace

80

Field

1951

Mary Worth

80

Field

1934

Hi and Lois

79

King

1954

Hagar the Horrible

76

King

1973

Nancy

72

United

1938

Alley Oop

63

NEA

1933

Family Circus

63

Register & Tribune

1960

Rex Morgan MD

62

Field

1948

Steve Canyon

62

Field

1947

Archie

61

King

1946

Berry's World

60

NEA

1963

Bugs Bunny

59

NEA

1943

Dick Tracy

55

Tribune

1931

Priscilla's Pop

55

NEA

1946

Short Ribs

55

NEA

1958

Winthrop

55

NEA

1956

Amazing Spider-Man

50

Register & Tribune

1977

Eek and Meek

49

NEA

1965

Shoe

47

Tribune

1977

Our Boarding House

45

NEA

1921

Tiger

44

King

1965

Buz Sawyer

42

King

1943

Captain Easy

42

NEA

1924

Gasoline Alley

41

Tribune

1918

Marmaduke

41

United

1954

Funky Winkerbean

38

Field

1972

Funny Business

38

NEA

1966

Judge Parker

38

Field

1952

Best Seller Showcase

37

Universal

1977

Side Glances

37

NEA

1928

They'll Do It Every Time

37

King

1929

Heathcliff

36

McNaught

1973

Tumbleweeds

36

United

1965

Tank McNamara

35

Universal

1974

Redeye

33

King

1967

Apartment 3-G

28

Field

1961

Small Society

28

Washington Star/King

1966

Broom Hilda

27

Tribune

1970

Donald Duck

27

King

1938

Grin and Bear It

26

Field

1932

Herman

26

Universal

1974

Steve Roper and Mike Nomad

25

Field

1936

Asterix & Obelix

24

Field

1977

Dunagin's People

24

Field

1969

Mark Trail

24

Field

1946

Heart of Juliet Jones

23

King

1953

Phantom

23

King

1936

Better Half

21

Register & Tribune

1956

Kerry Drake

21

Field

1943

Crock

20

Field

1975

Hazel

20

King

1969

Cathy

19

Universal

1976

Lockhorns

19

King

1968

Miss Peach

19

Field

1957

Graffiti

18

McNaught



Jackson Twins

18

McNaught

1950

Ripley's Believe It or Not

17

King

1918

Jeff Hawke

16

United

1977

Love Is

16

Los Angeles

1970

Zoonies

16

NEA

1977

Dondi

15

Tribune

1955

Fred Basset

15

Field

1965

Laff-A-Day

15

King

1936

Momma

15

Field

1970

Rip Kirby

15

King

1946

Ryatts

14

Field

1954

Sam and Silo

14

King

1977

Henry

14

King

1934

Mr. Tweedy

14

Los Angeles

1954

Ziggy

14

Universal

1971

Inside of Woody Allen

14

King

1976

Flintstones

13

McNaught

1961

Rick O'Shay

13

Tribune

1958

Agatha Crumm

12

King

1977

Brenda Starr

12

Tribune

1940

Charmers

12

Field

1975

Ferd'nand

12

United

1947

Gil Thorp

12

Tribune

1958

Girls

12

Field

1952

Joe Palooka

12

McNaught

1930

Modesty Blaise

12

Los Angeles

1976

Moose Miller

12

King

1965

Winnie Winkle

11

Tribune

1920

Mutt and Jeff

11

McNaught

1907

Sporting Life

11

Tribune

1977

Animal Crackers

10

Tribune

1968

Catfish

10

Tribune

1973

Motley's Crew

10

Tribune

1976

Nubbin

10

King

1958

Ponytail

10

King

1960

Trudy

10

King

1963

Casey

9

Tribune

1977

Little Orphan Annie

9

Tribune

1924

There Outta Be A Law

9

United

1944

Gordo

8

United

1941

Moon Mullins

8

Tribune

1923

Quincy

8

King

1970

Stanley

7

Universal

1977

Mickey Mouse

7

King

1930

Rooftop O' Toole

7

United

1976

Scamp

7

King

1955

Smith Family

7

Washington Star

1950

Wee Pals

7

King/United

1965

Wright Angles

7

NEA

1976

Wordsmith

6

Universal

1975

Captain's Gig

6

Field

1977

Don Q

6

New York Times

1975

Eb and Flo

6

United

1967

Emmy Lou

6

United

1944

Howard the Duck

6

Register & Tribune

1977

Lolly

6

Tribune

1955

Off the Record

6

Register & Tribune

1934

On Stage

6

Tribune

1957

Star Hawks

6

NEA

1977

According to Guinness

5

Universal

1975

A Little Leary

5

LA Times



Amy

5

Register & Tribune

1961

Bringing Up Father

5

King

1913

Citizen Smith

5

Register & Tribune

1967

Doodley's World

5

King

1972

Flash Gordon

5

King

1951

Flop Family

5

King

1943

Hubert

5

King

1945

Men and Woman

5

Field

1976

Mr. Abernathy

5

King

1957

Outcasts

5

Toronto Star



Rivets

5

Field

1953

Belvedere

4

Field

1962

Boner's Ark

4

King

1968

Brother Juniper

4

Field

1957

Carmichael

4

Los Angeles

1958

Dr. Kildare

4

King

1962

Dropouts

4

United

1968

Friends and Romans

4

United

1975

Frontiers of Science

4

Los Angeles

1962

Gumdrops

4

United

1977

Henny Youngman

4

Field

1977

Kelly

4

Universal

1972

Laugh Time

4

King

1968

Pixies

4

United

1966

Strictly Business

4

Field

1941

This Funny World

4

McNaught

1945

Time Out

4

Field

1936

Treadwells (aka The Neighbors)

4

Chicago Tribune

1939

Woody's World

4

United

1963

Ms. Augusta

3

Universal

1975

Basil

3

Universal

1974

Ben Wicks

3

LA Times



Big George

3

Field

1960

Boomer

4

United

1972

Channel Chuckles

3

Register and Tribune

1954

Dr. Smock

3

United

1974

Freedy

3

Field

1955

Health Capsules

3

United

1961

Kisses

3

Self-syndicated

1974

Lansky's Look

3

Universal

1974

Little Woman

3

King

1953

P.T. Bimbo

3

NEA

1975

Simpkins

3

Tribune

1971

Soft Focus

3

King

1976

Trim's Arena

3

Universal

1973

Wordplay

3

King

1973

Alex in Wonderland

3

Copley

1976

Big Ben Bolt

2

King

1950

Bi-Focals

2

McNaught

1977

Ching Chow

2

Tribune

1927

Clyde & Homer/Homer's Groaners (activity strip)

2

LA Times



Luther

2

Los Angeles

1969

Mandrake the Magician

2

King

1934

Norbert

2

United

1964

Pot Shots

2

Tribune

1975

Queenie

2

King

1966

Secret Agent Corrigan

2

King

1934

Smart Chart

2

Los Angeles

1970

Stan Smith's Tennis Class

2

King



As You Were

1

Pioneer

1971

Aw, Heck

1

Tampa Times

1976

Beautiful

1

Allied

1977

Benchwarmer's Sports Trivia

1

Copley



Brick Bradford

1

King

1933

Broadsides

1

LA Times

1975

Collector's Corner

1

United



Dewey's Den

1

Elwood Call-Leader

1977

Foster Fenwick

1

Chronicle

1968

Figments

1

Manson

1971

Hocus-Focus (activity panel)

1





Idea Chaser

1

Allied

1948

Lars and June

1

Self-syndicated

1977

Laughs From Europe

1

Register and Tribune

1958

Mark Trail's Outdoor Tips

1

Field



Missing Links

1

Canada-Wide



Now Society

1

Chronicle

1973

Pet Set

1

Self-syndicated

1973

Playing Better Golf With Jack Nicklaus

1

King



Pookas

1

LA Times

1977

Popeye

1

King

1919

Rocket Shots (sports instruction)

1

United



Rudy

1

Copley

1977

Selling Short

1

Universal



Strike Three

1

Chapel Hill Tarheel



Tarzan

1

United

1929

Teaching Pro (sports instruction)

1

LA Times



The Byrds

1

Toronto Star



Thoughts of Man

1

Tribune

1972

Today's World

1

King

1971

Toppix

1

Tribune`

1975

Travels With Farley

1

Chronicle

1975

Winnie Witch & The Giant Potato

1

Canada-Wide



You're Getting Closer

1

King

1976


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Without researching all newspapers (an impossible and thankless task) its clear the lower numbers are skewed. Popeye, who would have his own movie in 1980, shows only one newspaper! Flash Gordon is outranked three fold by the British Jeff Hawke! I can tell you I was reading two newspapers in the Boston area back then that carried Brick Bradford (because one didn't publish on holidays). Other than that, this was an enormous task and I suspect accurately reflects the exposure of the top strips.
 
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Tuesday, December 10, 2019

 

Jeffrey Lindenblatt's Paper Trends: The Three Hundred for 1978 -- Rookies

A comic strip’s life begins of course with the writer and artist creating a comic strip itself. Their next step is to send samples of their comic strip project to a syndicate. The syndicate then decides to either accept or pass on it. If they do accept the strip, it may spend time being honed and tested, but then it goes to the sales department to create a press packet to be sent to newspapers around the country. These sales packets are either sent out by mail, or are handed out in person by salespeople to newspaper features editors. If enough of those editors sign up, the strip begins its syndicated life. The following list shows which new comic strips sold the best in the calendar year of 1977 (and are therefore running on the first week of 1978).

The number one strip of the year is rare thing in 1977 -- a story strip. The last successful story strip up to this time was Apartment 3-G which debuted back in 1961. What makes this even rarer is that this was an adventure strip. The youngest adventure strip at this time was Steve Canyon, which debuted way back in 1947. Out of the 300 papers, 50 picked up this strip, which puts it at number 29 on the most popular list for 1978. That strip was The Amazing Spider-man. The surprising success of this strip is probably the main reason that the revival of the adventure strip came about and would last for the next eight years.

Coming in second with 47 papers is Shoe by Jeff MacNelly. Coming in third is Best Seller Showcase with 37 papers. This strip would come and go before the end of 1978, which makes it a classic example of editors loving the idea of the strip but losing faith very quickly. The next two strips were imports; one from France and the second from England. Asterix & Obelix got 24 papers and Jeff Hawke got 16 papers.

Here are the top ten:

Title Papers Rank
Amazing Spider-Man 50 29
Shoe 47 31
Best Seller Showcase 37 39
Asterix & Obelix 24 53
Jeff Hawke 16 68
Zoonies 16 68
Sam and Silo 14 76
Agatha Crumm 12 84
The Sporting Life 11 93
Casey 09 102
Stanley 07 108


Some other notables are The Captain's Gig, Howard the Duck and Star Hawks, all with six papers, and Gumdrops  and Henny Youngman, with four papers each.

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Monday, December 09, 2019

 

Jeffrey Lindenblatt's Paper Trends: The Three Hundred for 1978 -- Introduction

Back in the 1990s one of my earliest research projects was for Editor and Publisher. I indexed the Sunday and daily comics in the top one hundred circulation newspapers in the country. We did this for about four years.

A few months ago I contacted Allan about doing this again but suggested I start from the 1930s and go up to today to see the changes in comic strip circulation in the top newspapers over the years. He did not have the information on newspaper circulation and there was no online source available for the Editor & Publisher yearbooks, which had this data.

When I started doing research on comic strips back in the early 1990s the only source that was available to me was what was available in my local libraries on microfilm. That really did not help me even though I lived at the time in Queens which is part of New York City; most local libraries only carried The New York Times. In order to find out about The New York Daily News, for example, I would have to go to Manhattan to the big library with the famous lions in order to do the research. Old microfilms were at a place called the Annex which was not the greatest area to go to anyway.

The library had many New York papers and many out of town papers on microfilm, like the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times etc. Today we are very lucky to have available various online services that archive many newspapers.

I decided that I would research 300 different daily papers from big cities to small cities and determine an actual count of which strips are available in how many papers. First question: why 300 papers particularly? At this time not nearly every newspaper is available, so of course I take what I can get. I am a subscriber to newspapers.com service, and they can just barely supply me with 300 daily papers in the year I chose to start. Also, statistically speaking, it is really not necessary to check every newspaper. A representative sample is almost as good.

Here is the list of cities in the 50 states that we are taking the information from:

Alabama: Anniston, Montgomery (2 papers), Selma
Alaska: Sitka
Arizona: Flagstaff, Phoenix, Tuscon (2 papers)
Arkansas: No Papers
California: Escondido, Hanford, Lompoc, Los Angeles, Napa Valley, Petaluma, Roseville, Salinas, San Bernardino, San Francisco, San Pedro, Santa Cruz, Santa Maria, Santa Rosa, Tulare, Ukiah
Colorado: Colorado Springs, Fort Collins, Grand Junction
Connecticut: Hartford
Delaware: Wilmington (2 papers)
Florida: Cocoa, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Miami, Orlando, Pensacola (2 papers), St. Petersburg, Tallahassee, Tampa (2 papers), West Palm Beach
Georgia: Atlanta
Hawaii: Hilo, Honolulu (2 papers)
Idaho: Burley, Twin Falls
Illinois: Arlington Heights, Carbondale, Chicago, Decatur, De Kalb, Mattoon, Moline, Mount Carmel, Woodstock
Indiana: Bloomington, Columbus, Elwood, Franklin, Greenfield, Indianapolis (2 papers), Jasper, Kokomo, Lafayette, Logansport, Martinsville, Muncie (2 papers), Munster, Noblesville, Richmond, Seymour, South Bend, Streator, Valparaiso, Vincennes
Iowa: Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Des Moines (2 papers), Iowa City, Mason City, Muscatine, Sioux City, Waterloo
Kansas: Garden City, Iola, Manhattan, Ottawa, Salina
Kentucky: Danville, Louisville, Madisonville, Owensboro, Paducah
Louisiana: Alexandria, Crowley, Franklin, Morgan City, Opelousas, Shreveport
Maine: No Papers
Maryland: Annapolis, Baltimore (2 papers), Salisbury
Massachusetts: Boston, Pittsfield
Michigan: Battle Creek, Detroit, Ironwood, Port Huron
Minnesota: Minneapolis (2 papers), St. Cloud
Mississippi: Greenwood, Hattiesburg, McMomb, Yazoo City
Missouri: Chillicothe, Clarksdale, Flat River, Jackson, Lansing, Sedalia, Springfield (2 papers), St. Joseph (2 papers), St. Louis, Winona
Montana: Billing, Butte, Great Falls, Hamilton, Helena, Missoula
Nebraska: Beatrice, Fremont, Lincoln (2 papers)
Nevada: Reno
New Hampshire: No papers
New Jersey: Asbury Park, Bridgewater, Camden, Hackensack, Millville, Morristown, New Brunswick, Passaic, Paterson, Red Bank, Vineland
New Mexico: Albuquerque, Carlsbad, Deming, Santa Fe
New York: Binghamton, Elmira, Glens Falls, Ithaca, New York, Poughkeepsie, Rochester, White Plains
North Carolina: Asheville, Chapel Hill, Rocky Mount
North Dakota: Bismarck
Ohio: Akron, Chillicothe, Cincinnati, Circleville, Corvallis, Coshocton, Dayton (2 papers), Fremont, Lancaster, Mansfield, Marion, Marysville, Newark, Port Clinton, Zaneville
Oklahoma: Oklahoma City
Oregon: Albany, Coos Bay, Salem (2 papers)
Pennsylvania: Allentown, Altoona, Carlisle, Chambersburg, Danville, Doylestown, Gettysburg, Hanover, Huntingdon, Indiana, Kane, Lancaster (2 papers), Latrobe, Lebanon, Monessen, New Castle , Philadelphia (2 papers), Pittsburgh (2 papers), Pottstown, Pottsville (2 papers), Scranton (2 papers), Somerset, Sunbury, Titusville, Tyrone, Wilkes-Barre, York
Rhode Island: No Papers
South Carolina: Aiken, Greenwood, Orangeburg
South Dakota: Lead, Rapid City, Sioux Falls
Tennessee: Clarksville, Jackson, Johnson City, Kingsport, Murfessboro, Nashville
Texas: Austin, Bryan, Del Rio, El Paso, Galveston, Harlingen, Irving, Longview (2 papers), Marshall, McKinney, Odessa, Paris, Plano, Taylor, Tyler, Vernon, Victoria
Utah: Provo, Saint George, Salt Lake City
Vermont: Bennington, Brattleboro, Burlington
Virginia: Newport News, Staunton
Washington: Longview, Spokane (2 papers)
West Virginia: No Papers
Wisconsin: Appleton, Chippewa Falls, Eau Claire, Fond Du Lac, Green Bay, Kenosha, La Crosse, Madison (2 papers), Manitowoc, Marshfield, Neenah, Oshkosh, Racine, Sheboygan, Stevens Point, Wausau, Wisconsin Rapids
Wyoming: Casper

Also, we are taking information from north of the border:

Canada: Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Nanaimo, Ottawa (2 papers), Red Deer, Regina, Saskatoon, Vancouver (2 papers), Victoria, Whitehorse, Windsor


The data that I compiled was based on the daily comics in newspapers that run either five or six daily editions; I did not index Sundays. Why no Sundays? First of all, not all of these papers have a Sunday comic section. Also, microfilmers often omit the Sunday comics, so even though a paper ran them, they are often missing. Microfilmers often care more about flyers from supermarkets than comics! The other reason is that the Sunday comics were often pilfered from the library bound volumes, so they were not there by the time the microfilmer got there. Years ago I went with Bill Blackbeard to pick up bound files of the Sunday comic sections which were held by the New York Public Library. They were bound Sunday sections of the New York Journal-American from the 1930s. All the sections were incomplete. Someone had taken out all the Flash Gordon and Prince Valiant pages!

So why start with 1978? This is a natural cut-off point because many more newspapers are available online before that year. This is because of copyright laws that put material from 1978 forward in a different category. Since I wanted to make sure that enough newspapers would be available from the 1930s until 2019, this was where I wanted to start. Fair warning, though: as we go forward we will not have 300 papers all the time because some papers will not be available online, or they went out of business or merged with another paper (a very common occurrence starting in the 1980s and going forward). So, the information that I compiled was what was running in these 300 daily papers in the first week of 1978. I hope you enjoy the journey. We’ll start tomorrow with a look at the rookie strips of 1977, then we'll discuss chart-toppers in various categories, and finally a complete list of the features with the papers in which they appeared.







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I would have to check how far back it went, but the World Almanac used to have a chart every year listing the circulations of the largest daily newspapers in the U.S. I can double-check, since I have the entire set of Alamancs going back to 1927, but I believe the chart started to be published in the early 50s, and went through to the early 80s. If you need information, let me know.
 
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Saturday, December 07, 2019

 

What The Cartoonists Are Doing, March 1915 (Vol. 7 No.3)


 

[Cartoons Magazine, debuting in 1912, was a monthly magazine devoted primarily to reprinting editorial cartoons from U.S. and foreign newspapers. Articles about cartooning and cartoonists often supplemented the discussion of current events.

In November 1913 the magazine began to offer a monthly round-up of news about cartoonists and cartooning, eventually titled "What The Cartoonist Are Doing." There are lots of interesting historical nuggets in these sections, and this Stripper's Guide feature will  reprint one issue's worth each week.]

THE POWER OF NEWSPAPER CARTOONS
We wonder that no sustained outside effort has been made to hold in check the tremendous power of newspaper cartoonists, whose pictures were characterized a few days ago by Frank I. Cobb of the New York World as “pictorial editorials.” This is not saying that cartoonists are not answerable to managing editors, or that they are given unlimited license. Rather, we mean that they are permitted to say in pictures what managing editors would not permit in words.

There is a general impression that the cartoonists of certain opposition newspapers so stirred enmity against President McKinley that morally they could be charged with complicity in his assassination. For two decades cartoonists have been potent instruments in arraying class against class. Newspapers that have made the greatest use of cartoons have very generally made their appeal directly to persons who do not think closely, and whose minds can be inflamed more easily by vision than by reason.

The European war has inspired many cartoons of doubtful propriety, some of positive viciousness. Newspapers of the East are not as careful to maintain neutrality as those of Minnesota. Some of them are almost violently partisan and they admit editorial expression not calculated to help the President in keeping free from foreign entanglements. These cartoons serve as a somber background for what their editors say.

Cartoonists generally are genial men, and many are men of liberal education and broad reading. Perhaps most of them are artists first, and as artists they are trained to distort faces and to accentuate defects in order to give their cartoons the desired “punch.” In their pictures they permit themselves far more extravagance of expression than any editorial writer or special correspondent would dare. They do not stop short of sacrilege in their efforts to make their ideas telling.

Frankly we do not believe in allowing such fateful power in the hands of men whose training has not tended to bring out the qualities of judicial interpretation. The keen instruments of a surgeon belong in the hands of men qualified to use them; firearms, in the hands of those who can use them with discretion or under competent direction. Cartoons are “loaded” else they have little value; the man who aims them should have the coolest head.—Minneapolis Journal.



THE BIGGEST CARTOON
The “Wonders of Science,” reproduced on another page of this issue, was drawn by Will Dyson, of the London Daily Herald, and is said to be the largest cartoon ever published in an English newspaper. It was printed in the London Daily Mail, and has since been put on exhibition among a number of Mr. Dyson's other war cartoons at the Leicester Galleries, London.

Mr. Dyson came into the limelight several years ago when his cartoons in the Sydney Bulletin attracted widespread comment. Later he went to London, but failed to gain recognition until his labor cartoons began to appear daily in the London Herald. Mr. Dyson gained the name of “the cartoonist of revolt,” because of his opposition to all existing conditions. Since the outbreak of the war, he has turned his satirical talents against Germany. H. G. Wells, the famous novelist, has this to say of the Australian artist:

“Mr. Dyson perceives in militaristic monarchy and national pride a threat to the world, to civilization, and all that he holds dear; and straightway he sets about to slay it with his pencil, as I, if I could, would kill it with my pen. He turns his passionate gift against Berlin.”

A NEW “INDOOR SPORT"
T. A. Dorgan, “Tad” the cartoonist, was dining alone in a restaurant in Fulton Street the other night. A stranger dropped into the seat opposite and fell to discussing cartoons.

“Now take my old friend Tad,” said the stranger. “I like him personally. In fact we are the best of friends, but as an artist he is punk.”

“You know Tad then?” Tad asked.

“Know him ! I should say I do.”

“I’ll bet you $5 you don’t know him,” said Tad, reaching for his wallet. The $10 was deposited on the table.

“Now,” said the cartoonist, “how are you going to prove that you would know Tad if you saw him?” “That's a cinch,” chuckled the stranger, as he gathered in the money. “You are Tad.”—St. Joseph Gazette.

FRANCE HONORS “HANSI”
The Alsatian caricaturist, M. Waltz, who is known as “Hansi,” has been decorated with the cross of the Legion of Honor, says a recent dispatch to the Associated Press from Paris. Some time before the war broke out, Hansi was sentenced to one year's imprisonment at Leipzig for cartoons he drew ridiculing everything German in Alsace-Lorraine. He escaped, however, and volunteered as an interpreter in the French army. He has been mentioned in dispatches for his courage and as being a splendid example for his comrades.

WEBSTER DONS SPIKETAILS
Mr. H. T. Webster was roped and then branded with a full evening dress suit the other night and carted away to a swell musical event in Carnegie Hall, says the Passaic (N. J.) News.

When he was awakened after the first intermission by his companion he was told that the next number on the bill was the great Efram Zimbalist, the violinist.

“Do you mean to say there is such a person as Efram Zimbalist?” inquired the cartoonist. “I always thought he was a typographical error.”

TEACH CARTOONING IN PUBLIC SCHOOL
Ambitious young men will find an excellent opportunity to pursue work in cartooning at the South Brooklyn Evening High School, according to the Brooklyn Eagle. Anyone with any talent in drawing is admitted to the class, and expert instruction is being given. The attractive features of the instruction are free tuition and free materials with which to work. The class is expected to be one of the largest in the evening high school.

“The advantages of this work,” says the instructor, “lie in the fact that there is no time wasted. A student is advanced according to his ability. The instruction is absolutely individual, and there is no fake encouragement given. If a pupil does good work, he will be told so, and if he does poor work and shows no improvement, we will not encourage him to continue the work.”

“THE EARTHQUAKE ANSWERS"
These verses by Mary Moncure Parker were suggested by Mr. Bradley's cartoon, reproduced elsewhere in this issue.

What ho! Grim War! I, I am here. I, Earthquake, the Mighty One!
Beneath your chariot's lumbering wheels, these mankind things you've crushed,
Drunk with this warm, young human blood, along the highway rushed,
Calling above the cannon's roar, “War, War, the Mighty One.”

In egoistic orgie wild, a challenge you have hurled
To forces of the Universe, the tidal wave, the lurid fire
Unglutted, you have laughed to scorn. On and on, in mad desire
For blood of men, for power supreme, you’ve plunged o'er half the world.

Your bloody gauntlet I have seized. What, ho! The fight's begun!
With my great hands I cleave the earth. Behold the trenches wide and deep!
Into the yawning, ghastly gap whole busy, pulsing towns I sweep.
What ho! Grim War! I, I am here. I, Earthquake, Mighty One!

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A West St. Paul paper speaks of the noted cartoonist of another generation as “Petroleum V. Nast.” Both Nast and Nasby will shudder at this mix-up and its source.—St. Paul Pioneer Press.

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Clare Briggs, of the New York Tribune, has profusely illustrated a new book by Mrs. Charlotte Hay Meredith, of Peoria, which has just been published.

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Mrs. John F. John has been secured as a special cartoonist by the New York World. Mrs. John’s home is in Bloomfield, N. J.

RAILROADMAN CARTOONIST
Sam M. Copp, an employee of the Illinois Central Railroad at Fort Dodge, Iowa, has broken into the limelight as a cartoonist, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune. Mr. Copp proves his good nature by directing his satirical drawings at his own line of railroad work—that of a claim agent.

“The railroadman-artist pictures the ‘downs' of a claim agent,” says The Picayune, “as he declares that there are no 'ups.' Among the ‘downs' portrayed in a recent issue of the Illinois Central Magazine, is a picture of the claim agent sleeping, or attempting to sleep, in a village tavern; flirting with acute indigestion at the railroad lunch counters; trying to convince irate farmers that their hogs would have died anyhow if the train had not hit them, and in various other positions that go with his job.”

BRITISH ADMIRE CANADIAN CARTOONS
A display of war cartoons from the pen of A. G. Racey, of the Montreal Star, has been attracting a good deal of attention in London, according to the London Times. Mr. Racey has drawn some striking cartoons on the war and his work is said to be on a par with the best that has been produced in England since the start of the world conflict.

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The Chicago Daily News has issued, in book form, a collection of war cartoons by L. D. Bradley. The cartoons date from the beginning of the war, and form a pictorial history of the first five months of the conflict. The cartoonist has taken a neutral stand in his drawings, although much of his work indicates that he is a bitter foe of militarism.

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Ryan Walker, socialist cartoonist, recently purchased a neat little bungalow at Great Notch, N.J., and does most of his work far from the “busy marts of trade.”

ROYALTY'S CHECK ON CARTOONS

Apprehensive lest royalty fall into disrepute, and socialism assert itself too strongly, if the license of the cartoonists goes unchecked, King George and Queen Mary of England, according to a dispatch to the New York World, are using their influence to suppress some of the grosser caricatures of the kaiser which have appeared in certain London newspapers. The “Kaiser's Kalendar,” published by the London Daily Express, and reproduced elsewhere in this issue, and the “Adventures of the Two Willies,” in the London Mirror, on which were modeled the amusing “cartoon dolls” shown also in this issue, and some of Jack Walker's drawings in the Daily Graphic, will probably be found among the offenders. The censor has been given instructions to prohibit further publication of one series, and to keep his eye on others. The war office already has made a ruling that the cartoons cannot be sent to soldiers in the field, and publishers have been obliged to make statements to that effect.

Emperor William, the dispatch states, has been repeatedly represented as a butcher and as a man whose character is so detestable that the slum boys and girls ought to be applauded for throwing mud at him. The crown prince has been almost universally referred to as “the Clown Prince” and drawn by the cartoonists for the newspapers and magazines as a half-witted fellow with no claim whatsoever to the consideration and esteem of anyone.

The Iron Cross, with which the emperor decorates his soldiers for bravery on the battlefield, has had its mock representation offered for sale in the London streets, a death's head and the emperor's name upon it. Hucksters dressed in fantastic German garb made sales with “Old iron, who will buy?”

Never since the French Revolution was precipitated by the slanderous and satirical lampoons of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette has there been such a campaign of offensive abuse as the London press has indulged in against the German royal family; and as King George and Queen Mary are both members of the same family, with hardly a drop of blood in their veins which is anything but German, the wave of scorn and hatred of German royalty whipped into fury by the newspaper writers and artists of the English capital is bound to surge up to the very steps of the British throne unless drastic action is taken by the British authorities themselves.

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R. M. Brinkerhoff, magazine illustrator, and former cartoonist of the Cincinnati Post, has embarked in the confectionery business in New York.

DOCTOR'S CARTOON CAUSES ROW
Dr. Ernest Amory Codman, a prominent surgeon of Boston, angered the surgical section of the Suffolk District Medical Society, of which he was chairman, by displaying a cartoon he had drawn, satirizing the “Harvard Medical Ring,” as he labeled it. The cartoon so offended the members of the society that Doctor Codman was forced to resign as chairman of the body.

In the offending cartoon, an ostrich, representing the Back Bay population, was shown feeding on a “Hill of Humbug” and laying “Golden Eggs” for the “Medical Ring,” represented by figures labeled with names prominent in the “ring.” President Lowell of Harvard University, the Harvard Medical School, the Massachusetts General Hospital, and the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital were thus singled out.
In explanation Doctor Codman accused the medical ring of operating at fancy prices for appendicitis, on the slightest excuse. He announced that it was easier to remove the appendix than to determine before the operation if there was really anything the matter with the organ.

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Clare A. Briggs, of the New York Tribune, has yielded to the blandishments of musical comedy, and his famous “Skinnay” is to be dressed up, as to book, by Ring W. Lardner, and set to music by Aubrey Stauffer. The production will open soon in Chicago.

CALL FOR DOCTOR YAK!
A newly employed bell boy at the Hotel LaSalle, Chicago, recently created a laugh in the lobby of the hostelry by paging “Doctor Yak,” Sidney Smith's comic-section character. The “green” bell hop evidently had not seen a comic section of the Chicago Tribune, as he took his order to page the doctor seriously, and kept up his call for nearly fifteen minutes. Finally he reported back to the desk clerk.

“Doctor Yak isn't here.”

“Why, Doc Yak is a goat,” said the clerk. “He appears in the funny papers.”

The new bell hop got red about the ears and remarked that he guessed he was the “goat” instead of Old Doc Yak.

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A cartoon by Mr. Blackman, of the Birmingham Age-Herald, was used recently by the Rev. Willis G. Clark of that city, to illustrate a sermon on Christianity.

“FAMOUS CARTOONIST DEAD”
Under this caption the London News and Leader, in a recent issue, announces to its readers the startling fact that “Mr. Eugene Zimmerman, the famous American caricaturist, is dead.” The News and Leader continues:

“The deceased, who was 52 years of age, started life as a boy on a farm doing odd jobs, and was successively assistant fish peddler, baker, and sign painter. He was connected with “Puck,” and afterwards as cartoonist for ‘Judge.” Mr. Zimmerman is perhaps better known to the public as ‘Zim.’”
Which reveals the remarkable fact that the News and Leader does not know its own aristocracy. Mr. Eugene Zimmerman, the Cincinnati railroad magnate, was the man who died. He was the father-in-law of the Duke of Manchester. “Zim,” who also enjoys the name of Eugene Zimmerman, refused to take the announcement of his death seriously and drew the accompanying cartoon of himself attending his own funeral.




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Friday, December 06, 2019

 

Wish You Were Here, from Albert Carmichael


This card is unsigned and the maker is also anonymous. But we are so goshdarn well-informed around here that I can hear a chorus of readers chanting, "Albert Carmichael, Taylor & Pratt series #728, circa 1913-1914."

Bravo to you all!

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Is the gal pantomiming a cell phone call?
 
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Thursday, December 05, 2019

 

Toppers: Cousin Juniper


Under the direction of its original creator, Sidney Smith, The Gumps was the gold standard for comedy - soap opera strips, a genre that it created. When Smith died in 1935, however, the Chicago Tribune - New York News Syndicate made what is pretty universally considered an error in judgment by handing the strip over to Gus Edson.

The heir apparent for The Gumps was Stanley Link, but according to legend, Link thought he had the syndicate by the short hairs. He made some pretty big demands and acted as if he was indispensible. According to a story told to me by Jim Ivey, Link put the final nail in his coffin when he came to a meeting with syndicate chief Joe Patterson and put his feet up on the Captain's desk. Apparently Link was not totally out of favor, because he continued Ching Chow, Tiny Tim and originated other features for the syndicate for many years hence.

I find Edson's version of The Gumps to be really tiresome, but perhaps through inertia alone the strip maintained a very healthy list of newspaper clients through the 1940s and even into the 50s.

The Sunday page of the strip had a topper for awhile in the Sidney Smith years, a revival of Smith's popular Old Doc Yak strip that was his first big hit back in the teens. But Smith or his syndicate seemed to have little interest in it, and it was dropped in early 1934. From then on the strip ran without a topper at all (a rarity in the 1930s) until the first Sunday of 1944, when the Gus Edson version suddenly added a one-tier topper called Cousin Juniper. Juniper was a pre-existing character in the strip, a bald sailor who had befriended young Chester Gump. In the topper he became a bland vehicle for weak gags.

The topper made The Gumps function better in the newly popular third page size; rather than trying to shoehorn a whole tab's worth of strip into that small format, the main strip was shortened so as not to end up with a very busy looking three tier third.

The new strip was emininetly forgettable, but appeared as a part of the half-page and tab versions of the strip for over a decade. In 1955 Edson for some reason dropped Cousin Juniper in favor of a new topper strip titled Grandpa Noah. Unfortunately, finding The Gumps Sundays in either of those formats by 1955 is so unusual that I can't give you a specific end date for Cousin Juniper, and I don't know how long Grandpa Noah ran. (I can say that based on original art for the feature, the topper seems to have disappeared by 1957.) Any information readers can give would be much appreciated.

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Have you check out neither the Chicago Tribune or New York Daily News Sundays on newspapers.com yet? You might find those toppers there!!!
 
Based on my spotty index, the Daily News ran the Gumps as a half-tab by 1955, and had dropped it by 1956. The Chicago Tribune had dropped the Gumps by 1955, and if they did shoehorn it in they would have run it as a third.

--Allan
 
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Wednesday, December 04, 2019

 

Obscurity of the Day: The History Of Marriage


In 1927 King Features produced a short-run daily strip that cherry-picked odd and unusual facts about marriage from a recently published book titled A Short History of Marriage by Edward Westermarck. The strip ran from July 12 to August 6 in the San Francisco Examiner, and ran in some client papers as a weekly (as shown above, using two strips per weekly episode).

The strip seemed to end rather abruptly after that that three week run. Perhaps they were out of material, or perhaps there was enough blowback from clients over the contents of the strip that they dumped it. Alexander Popini, freed from his usual job of drawing chaste romance cartoons, was having a field day depicting bare-breasted native girls in the last few installments, and maybe he went too far. Here's the final installment:




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Tuesday, December 03, 2019

 

Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Albert Levering


Albert L. Levering was born in 1869 at Hope, Indiana, according to Herringshaw’s National Library of American Biography, Volume 3 (1914). The 1900 U.S. Federal Census recorded his birth date as March 1870. The middle initial was included in numerous city directories.

In the 1870 census, Levering was the youngest of three siblings born to Levi [Lemuel] Levering, a stair builder, and Sarah [Martha Youngling]. The family lived in Columbus, Indiana.

The 1880 census said Levering was the third of four siblings whose father was a carpenter. Their home was in Columbus.

By 1882 the Levering family was in Kansas City, Missouri. The 1882 city directory listed Levering’s father and partner, G.M.D. Knox, as the architectural firm, Levering & Knox, on Main Street. The 1883 directory said Levering’s father had his own practice at 527 Main Street. In 1886 the address was 605 Delaware Street.

The New York Daily Tribune, August 23, 1902, said “Levering was educated to be an architect …”. Kansas City directories for 1887 through 1889 said Levering was a draughtsman at his father’s firm, L. L. Levering. Levering resided with his parents at 1007 Harrison Street.



The 1890 directory is not available. Levering’s occupation was architect in the 1891 directory. He lived with his parents at 2137 Lexington. The 1892 directory listed Levering as an artist at the Kansas City Journal. He was an architect in the 1893 directory.

Levering was listed in two 1894 city directories: an architect in Kansas City, and a draftsman at Orff & Joralemon in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he stayed at the Hotel Clinton. In 1895 he was listed in the Kansas City directory but, more likely in Minneapolis directory, he was a resident living at the Victoria. Levering was an artist studying with Burt Harwood.

The Minneapolis Journal, January 3, 1903, said

… Mr. Levering began his artistic career here [Minneapolis]. He was one of the best of the many good architectural draftsmen who have worked in the twin cities. While doing his best work in architecture he abandoned this work to do newspaper illustrating. He was a hard worker and made rapid progress, studying in the night classes of Burt Harwood’s art school and doing a phenomenal amount of work for his paper. From here he went to the Chicago Tribune, and then to the New York Journal, and after two or three years newspaper work went to Munich for two years’ study abroad.
The Kansas City Journal, January 6, 1895, said “Mr. Albert Levering, of the Minneapolis Times, visited friends in this city during the holidays.” Six months later the Journal, June 7, 1895, reported the Western Authors and Artists’ Club meeting and said “… Albert Levering, of Minneapolis, Minn., formerly of the Journal …”.

The 1896 Chicago, Illinois city directory said Levering was a Tribune artist residing at 294 Erie Street. Obituaries said Levering moved to New York City in 1896.

In the late 1890s Levering went abroad. The Indianapolis Journal, August 25, 1902, said Levering “studied art at the National Academy, Munich, and finished that portion of his study by spending four months in Italy on a bicycle, investigating all sorts of delightful by-ways and out-of-the-way corners. …”

Sara Duke said in her book, Biographical Sketches of Cartoonists & Illustrators in the Swann Collection of the Library of Congress (2014), artist Will Crawford “… shared a studio with John Marchand and Albert Levering.” According to the 1900 census, Levering, Marchand, Crawford and Percy Gray, all artists, resided at 53 East 59th Street in Manhattan, New York City.

Levering contributed to Harper’s Monthly Magazine, September 1900, and Harper’s Weekly, November 17, 1900.

Levering was located at 27 West 30th Street in the 1902 city directory. In 1902 Levering illustrated the books, Grimm Tales Made Gay, The Adventures of M. d’Haricot, Mollie and the Unwiseman, and Alice in Blunderland: An Iridescent Dream (1907).

The following Philadelphia Post story was printed in many newspapers in early 1904.

Albert Levering, the black-and-white artist responsible for so many ‘comics,’ used to live in Chicago, but recently transferred his allegiance to New York. He took his hypochondrical [sic] tendencies with him, and they are still in good working order. His favorite pastime is to read of some deadly disease, preferably a new one, lie awake all night, seek his doctor in the morning and get assured that he was in perfect health and then go back to work cheerfully.

One morning he turned up at the doctor’s just as the man of medicine was getting into his carriage.

“I’m in a hurry,” called the doctor, “and can’t stop to see you—but it’s all right—you haven’t got it.”

“Haven’t got what?” demanded the astonished artist.

“Whatever it is you think you’ve got. Not a symptom of it. Good-bye,” and he drove away.

“Well, now,” said Levering, turning to a lamp post as the only witness of the scene, “that’s the time he’s mistaken. I know I’ve got it—ten dollars in my pocket to pay my last bill; but if he’s sure I haven’t I’ll try and get in line with his diagnosis,” and he went around the nearest junk shop and invested the money in a pair of brass candlesticks and a brass kettle.

Indiana’s Laughmakers: The Story of Over 400 Hoosiers (1990) said Levering married Francis Jewell Levering of Bloomfield, New Jersey on May 31, 1905. 

The Chicago Tribune, April 29, 1906, announced that John T. McCutcheon, a Tribune cartoonist, was going on vacation for five months. The Tribune made arrangements with 31 cartoonists to cover for McCutcheon. Thirty American cartoonists committed to providing a cartoon for the month of May. Levering, of Harper’s Weekly, was one of them. Englishman Tom Browne would replace McCutcheon from June through September.

Pacific Commercial Advertiser 7/3/1903

Hampton’s Magazine 7/1909
Hampton’s Magazine 10/1909


In the 1910 census Levering and his wife were Manhattan, New York City residents at 206 West 106th Street.

American Newspaper Comics (2012) said Levering produced two comic series: Artful Arty and Alex Smart, from October 15, 1905 to October 14, 1906, for the Philadelphia Press; and The Flatt Family, from August 7 to September 10, 1918, for Press Publishing.

From 1911 to 1812 Levering illustrated George Ade’s New Fables in Slang.

Levering contributed many cartoons to the New York Tribune from 1916 to 1917.

In 1919, Levering illustrated Potash and Perlmutter series that appeared nationally in newspapers.

Levering’s address was 617 West 170th in the 1920 census. The 1925 state census recorded self-employed artist Levering at 222 West 23rd Street in Manhattan.

Levering passed away April 14, 1929, in New York City. The Rhinebeck Gazette (New York), April 20, 1929, published an obituary.

Albert Levering, illustrator, died of heart trouble, from which he had been suffering for several weeks, Sunday morning in his apartment at the Hotel Chelsea in New York city. His wife, Mrs. Frances Jewell Levering, who is formerly from Red Hook, was with him when the end came.

Born in Hope, Ind., sixty years ago, the son of Levi Lemuel and Sarah Martha Youngling Levering, he studied architecture with his father, and later took up drawing in Munich. He practiced architecture several years in San Antonio, Texas, and then became a newspaper artist, working successively in Kansas City, Minneapolis and Chicago. Coming to New York in 1896, he joined “The Journal”, now The New York American. Later Mr. Levering was on the staffs of Puck, Life and Harper’s Weekly and other magazines, and then began a Sunday page for the New York Tribune. Many humorous books contained his Illustrations.

Mr. Levering is well known in Red Hook, having spent several summers there and was one of the prominent figures about town when the trout season opened.

Surviving him are his wife and a brother and two sisters of Kansas City. Funeral services were held on Tuesday at the Campbell Funeral church, Sixty-sixth street and Broadway, New York city. Burial was in Rhinebeck cemetery.

Several obituaries said Levering practiced architecture for eight years in San Antonio, Texas, before becoming a cartoonist. I have found no documentation supporting that claim. It’s possible Levering worked on projects for San Antonio clients. For eight years, from 1887 to 1895, Levering’s occupation was draughtsman or architect in Kansas City and Minneapolis city directories.

 

Further Viewing
Indiana Illustrators and Hoosier Cartoonists
Library of Congress
Metropolitan Museum of Art
WikiMedia Commons
Bibliography of Ellis Parker Butler


—Alex Jay

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