Saturday, January 07, 2012
You'll recall that we covered that strip as an obscurity about a month ago, and Mark shortly thereafter mentioned that he seemed to recall an episode running in the North American. I disagreed, saying that my indexing of that paper indicated no such occurrence. A week or so passed and brother Cole sends me this scan, which he assures me is from the March 9 1902 issue of the North American, my index notwithstanding. Presumably the comic section I indexed on microfilm was incomplete or I just plain missed it.
The remaining question, then, is whether this episode also ran in the New York World, or if it ran only in the North American. If it did run in the World, did it run on March 9? Or is it the one remaining episode of February 16 not printed with my earlier blog post? Sadly all these questions are, at least for the moment, unanswered.
The Feb 16 World episode of Musical Mose is "Musical Mose 'Impussanates' a Scotchman, With Sad Results." I never saw the "Exclusive Professions" episode in the World comic supplement during this period, though I have a vague memory that at least one Mose got picked up by some other paper. I really like the Garibaldi picture in the first and last panels of this one!
In any case, he got away with this switch. He isn't referred to as Mose, even though it's obvious it is. The transient nature of 1902 series strips meant nobody noticed.
Friday, January 06, 2012
Ink-Slinger Profiles: Harry Temple
Labels: Ink-Slinger Profiles
Thursday, January 05, 2012
Obscurity of the Day: Sketches From Life
Try to imagine something like Sketches from Life appearing in your daily paper -- a little eddy of somber reflection in a sea of headlines about war, crime and dirty politics. If you were a newspaper editor, would you see the value of Sketches from Life? Not many newspaper editors did take the feature, but those who did tended to be very loyal to it. I can certainly see why that would be. It seems to me readers could get quite addicted to a few square inches of calm meditation amid all the clamor and commotion of the news.
Sketches From Life was produced for the Cleveland Plain Dealer from September 17 1913 to November 24 1926. The Plain Dealer seems to have used World Color Printing as the syndicator of the feature for most of its life. There is some circumstantial evidence of a distribution relationship, perhaps short-term, with either Associated Newspapers or the Philadelphia Inquirer, too.
A book collection of the feature was issued in 1915 by World Color Printing, but there must have been a terrible distribution problem. The book is extremely rare -- I have never seen a copy for sale, and WorldCat shows copies of the book at only three libraries in the country.
Tomorrow: an Ink-Slinger Profile of Harry Temple
This notation on the title page of the book holds the answer to your mystery: "This book printed for gift distribution only, is limited to 1,000 numbered copies of which this is number 858 and all copies have been distributed The Plain Dealer First Newspaper of Cleveland Sixth City 1915"
I imagine that the dearth of library copies is due not only to the tiny number printed but the gift-distribution factor. Probably most of those still in existence are in attics--or the private collections of the discerning.
For your interest and enjoyment I'm sending you scans of the cover and title page in both PDF and MS Word formats. Thank you again for posting your blog on this subject. As you noted, copies appear to be very rare. There's no ebook listed on googlebooks, and apparently neither that outlet nor Abe books has a hard copy.
Before resorting to ebay I'll consult a local antiquarian book expert I've dealt with before.
I too have a numbered print of Temple's "Sketches from Life", #790 of 1000. In your post you mentioned consulting a book antiquarian as to the books rarity. Were you able to garner any useful information?
Wednesday, January 04, 2012
Ink-Slinger Profiles: Murray Jones Jr.
In 1930 they lived in Durham, North Carolina at 1528 Hermitage Court. Information about Jones's childhood art training has not been found. Jones attended Duke University; he was pictured in the 1934 yearbook The Chanticleer. In the 1935 Chanticleer he was pictured (see photo) in the fraternity Alpha Tau Omega. While a student, he contributed art to Caro-Graphics; The Dispatch (Lexington, North Carolina) published one of them, by Jones and Johnston, on November 1, 1934. Jones was listed, at the same address as his parents, in the Hill's Durham City Directory from 1936 to 1943. In Durham County: A History of Durham County, North Carolina (2011), Jean Bradley Anderson wrote:
...While Durham had many practicing artists by the decade of the 1970s, it had not been devoid of native talent in earlier times, and contrary to the contention of the Atlantic Monthly article that the arts were the province of Durham's women, the 1930s produced a group of men who became professional artists. Both the time and the place, however, made earning a living by art impossible, so that if they intended to stick to their last they had to go elsewhere to survive. In that decade appeared Nelson Rosenberg, Eugene Erwin, Ralph Fuller, Jr.*, Murray Jones, Jr., and Nathan Ornoff….
In 1939 when he was 24, Jones registered with the Army, according to his Army registration card at Ancestry.com. He was a student at Duke, and described as six feet and a half-inch tall, weighing 143 pounds, with hazel eyes and brown hair. The Shirley Jones Gallery said, "…Jones entered the Chicago Art Institute in the mid-1930s where he studied painting, drawing and the graphic arts. He graduated with an MFA degree in 1939." The May 23, 1939, Chicago Tribune story, "3 Art Institute Janitors Picked for Trip Abroad", said, "The student-janitors, who won awards of $1,500 each, are: Murray Jones, 24 years old, 17 West H- street, who comes from Durham, N.C…." The Detroit News, January 31, 1998, profiled Jones and said, "Murray Jones received his MFA at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1939, then traveled to Tahiti and Latin America…."
In 1940 he was an instructor at the Summer School of Painting in Saugatuck, Michigan, according to ads in Arts Magazine 1940. According to Shirley Jones Gallery, he served in the Army during World War II. The Detroit News said, "He joined the faculty at Michigan State University in 1946…" A June 30, 1946 news release from Art Institute of Chicago announced "Paintings by Janet and Murray Jones, and Maurice Ritman, exhibition". The date of Jones's marriage is not known. Their son Michael was born in 1946, according to Shirley Jones Gallery. Time Magazine published his letter in its January 13, 1947 issue.
Shirley Jones Gallery said, "From 1959-61, Jones lived and worked in Kyoto Japan under the sponsorship of a Fullbright Research Fellowship….at Michigan State University...he taught until 1962 at which time he accepted a professorship at Ohio State University…." Jones passed away in 1964. In a 1985 issue of Dialogue, from the Akron Art Institute in Ohio, Dale Newkirk said Jones died of multiple sclerosis. Murray Jones 1915-1964: A Memorial Exhibition was published in 1965.
Labels: Ink-Slinger Profiles
Tuesday, January 03, 2012
Obscurity of the Day: Caro-Graphics
Caro-Graphics is one of the many features that have come and gone over the years that tell factoids about a state, region or city. I doubt that there is a state in the union that can't boast a few of these features. Caro-Graphics focuses on North Carolina, which makes it two known for that state; the other being Carolina Hall of History.
Armed with the knowledge that the feature existed, some online searching revealed that it ran at least 1933 to 1937. The earliest samples carry credits to Nash Johnston and someone named Fuller. I believe they were both writers on the feature; Johnston was for sure. I say Fuller was a writer, too, because the art remains consistent throughout the life of the feature, and seems to have been by Murray Jones, Jr. throughout. I guess Jones didn't ask for credit early on. By late 1934 Fuller has disappeared, and then by 1937 so has Johnston, leaving Jones to presumably fend for himself as both artist and writer. Unfortunately I found no paper that ran the feature consistently or long enough to give more definite credit dates than these.
The writing is run of the mill for this sort of feature, but Jones' art is certainly an asset. Pleasingly stylized and slick, it really makes the feature quite attractive despite the awful reproduction of these samples, all found online.
Thanks to Lew Powell for putting me on the scent!
Monday, January 02, 2012
News of Yore: Edward D. Kuekes
Kuekes, known familiarly to his associates and countless admiring readers as "Ed." will not be facing a new task in concentrating his facile technique on editorial cartoons. On and off since 1926 he filled in for Donahey when the senior cartoonist was on vacation, away on trips or out because of ill health.
Kuekes' artistic leanings were first discovered when as a child he snipped a folded piece of paper with his mother's scissors and fashioned a bird and a horse. His parents encouraged the ability, and study at art school came later.
Drawing Like a Golfer
The new cartoonist holds to the theory that a drawing should be like a golfer—"the fewer the strokes the better."
Seldom one to ask friends for comment on his work, Kuekes feels acceptance is sound praise or unfounded criticism come from such requests.
Once, when Kuekes had placed a pastel he had done of a dog on the mantel in his home, the artist received the "sincerest form of flattery." His cocker spaniel bounced into the house, spotted the picture and barked.
After attending Baldwin-Wallace College, the cartoonist studied at the Cleveland School of Art and the Chicago Academy of Fine arts before coming to this paper.
Features Include "Kernel"
Plain Dealer features of the artist which have brought him acclaim over the years have included "The Kernel," one-column fixture of the comic page; "Closeups," movie page feature done with W. Ward Marsh; "Cartoonist Looks at the News," published on the Sunday editorial page; "Funny Fables," popular feature from 1933 to 1937 which was later published, and "Alice in Wonderland," a series done with Miss Olive Ray Scott, which was carried in 20 papers in the United States and several European publications before the war.
Interest in magic brought the birth of "The Kernel" in 1942. Kuekes first sketched the likable little rabbit as a trade-mark on the drawings sent from a magicians' convention he helped cover for the Plain Dealer in Kenton, O.
An ardent hobbyist, Kuekes is an mature orchid grower, is widely known for his skill in playing bells and is active in doing pastels and etchings in his remaining spare time.
The cartoonist, his wife, Clara, and two sons, Edward G. (Pat) and George C., both seniors at Baldwin-Wallace College, live at 112 East Center Street, Berea.
[Edward Daniel Kuekes (KEY-kess) was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on February 2, 1901, according to Current Biography Yearbook (1954). In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, he was the third of four children born to Otto and Elizabeth, both German emigrants. They lived in Pittsburgh at 525 Jackson Street. His father was an employment office agent. The Encyclopedia of Cleveland History said, "…Kuekes moved with his family from his native Pittsburgh, Pa., to Berea [Ohio] in 1913. There he graduated from Berea High School before pursuing art studies at the Cleveland School of Art…and the Chicago Academy of Fine Art."
In 1920 the family lived in Middleburg, Ohio at 128 East Center Street. Kuekes was a salesman at a notion store. According to the Encyclopedia of Cleveland History, "In 1922 he married Clare Gray of Berea and began his career at the Plain Dealer as understudy for cartoonist James H. Donahey." He has not been found in the 1930 census.
He was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1953 (see photo) for the cartoon "Aftermath", published in the Plain Dealer on November 9, 1952. The cartoon can be viewed here. The original art is at the Library of Congress.
Current Biography Yearbook said, "Kuekes has hazel eyes and light brown hair. He stands five feet nine inches tall and weighs 148 pounds. His hobbies include raising orchids, taming wild ducks, doing pastels and etchings, and playing a set of twenty-five to thirty musical bells." In 1964 Kuekes gifted a collection of his cartoons to Syracuse University.
Kuekes passed away on January 13, 1987 (Social Security Death Index), in the Baptist Retirement Home in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma (Encyclopedia of Cleveland History).]
Labels: News of Yore
Sunday, January 01, 2012
Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics
Labels: Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics