Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Obscurity of the Day: Babies
Although the panel itself used a revolving set of titles, the official title of this series, as reported in the annual Editor & Publisher listing, was Babies.
John H. Striebel gave birth to Babies on September 21 1925, the Associated Editors syndicate played midwife.
This tall one-column panel was essentially a replacement for a very similar panel titled Pantomime by Striebel for the same syndicate. The only real difference was that Pantomime didn't limit its focus to small children.
The Babies feature did reasonably well, appearing in a creditable number of papers, and even had a jumbo sized version available for Sunday papers. The Sunday version was also in black and white and was designed to plug a space in Sunday magazine sections.
In 1929 Striebel started providing the art for the new Dixie Dugan strip, a feature whose circulation took off like a rocket right out of the gate. Faced with continuing the modestly successful Babies or devoting his time to Dixie Dugan, Striebel made the obvious choice and dropped this series on November 29 1930.
Not sure about your start date, though. We've got some that are clearly part of the Babies motif, going back a little earlier, to August 31 of '25.
All dates that I report are most definitely subject to correction, and that's part of the reason I do the blog so much thanks! There's an unexplained gap between my end date on Pantomime and the start date of Babies that you've closed in a little. Wouldn't surprise me a bit if we eventually find evidence that they follow one another without a gap.
My start date came from the San Francisco Chronicle. For my records where does your new start date come from?