Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Obscurity of the Day: Ambitions of Sonny and Sue

Albert Carmichael is one of the most intriguing and mysterious cartoonists to me. In fact one of my first posts to this blog back in 2005 was a little appreciation of Carmichael.

One of the reasons I started the blog was as bait for contacting people who had more intimate knowledge of cartoonists who intrigue me, Carmichael of course being one of those. I've been lucky enough to connect with relatives of Roy Taylor, Ethel Hays and others through the blog, learning some fascinating stuff here and there. Carmichael, though, has been a blank all these years. That is, until this past summer when I was contacted by his great grand-daughter. So far I've learned a few interesting tidbits (for instance -- he died of complications after an appendectomy), with promises of more reminiscences to come. Unfortunately we both had busy schedules at the time, and I haven't heard from her in a long while. I know that life has an unfortunate habit of not slowing down so that we can catch up, but I do hope that I'll hear from her again.

Today's obscurity, a weekday strip called The Ambitions of Sonny and Sue, was penned by Albert Carmichael for the New York Evening World from September 19 to December 26 1908. It didn't run all that often, and the plot about the romance between a secretary and a clerk in an office is less than enthralling. But this is early Carmichael, just seventeen years old, and he'll improve.

Tomorrow: Alex Jay's Ink-Slinger Profile of Albert Carmichael


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