Saturday, November 08, 2014
Monday, August 31 1908 -- One week from now, Stanley Ketchel and Billy Papke will fight for the world middleweight championship, right here in li'l ole Los Angeles. The fight will be at Jim Jeffries' boxing club, and Jeffries himself will referee.
The populace of L.A. have, in the words of sportwriter H.M. Walker, "gone fight crazy!" At Ketchel's camp, the entrance gates were literally smashed to pieces under the onslaught of between six and seven thousands fans wanting to see him work out. Papke's camp was similarly thronged, with a reported four thousand spectators.
Labels: Herriman's LA Examiner Cartoons
Friday, November 07, 2014
Sci-Friday starring Connie
In one of the less satisfying story conclusions ever, it turns out that our protagonists having been running around the arctic like a bunch of drunk penguins to no effect, good or ill, whatsoever. The mad doctor was perfectly capable of blowing himself to smithereens. Reminds me of Petey's Little Neuro comic books.
Labels: Connie Sci-Friday
and it explodes.
Talk about a similar let down!
So, back home and find a new villain, eh?
Alternate History: the world goes all aslant and Borgg becomes Dictator of the Planet. He returns the World to its old position as Connie agrees to marry him and save the world.
Her father starts work on a new Ultimate Accumulator. The Eskimo's shake their heads, saying "Crazy Americans! Aren't they something!"
Thursday, November 06, 2014
Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Clark S. Haas
The 1930 census recorded Haas in Omaha at 1140 Turner Boulevard. His artistic talent was reported in the World-Herald (Omaha, Nebraska), September 2, 1934.
Clark S. Haas, jr., 15, son of Mr. and Mrs. Clark S. Haas, South Turner boulevard, is attaining fame as a cartoonist, though he has had no training along this line.
Last week when Arthur B. Dunbar, president of the Nebraska Association of Insurance agents, entertained officers of the association at an informal stag dinner at his home [and] much of the success of the dinner was due to Clark, jr.’s efforts.
…Clark, jr., with just a gift for cartooning reproduced each to the life, although he knew not a one of them, from information gained a bit at a time from Mrs. Dunbar.Haas attended Central High School and, in the 1937 yearbook, he was in the Cadet Officers’ Club as Second Lieutenant of Company E.
According to the 1940 census, Haas continued to live with his parents in Omaha at the same address. Haas’s occupation was artist. The 1940 and 1941 Omaha city directories said he was an artist with “WPCo.”
The World-Herald, February 11, 1944, reported Haas’s recovery, from an unnamed illness, in Florida: “Mrs. Clark S. Haas and her son, Clark S. Haas, jr., will stay another two months at Hollywood, Fla….Mr. Haas, jr., who has been ill for the last year, is rapidly recovering, goes swimming every day and spends considerable time on the beaches.”
On May 22, 1944, Haas married Hilda Christianson in Omaha. The next day, the World-Herald said: “…Mr. and Mrs. Haas have gone to Texas where Mr. Haas will resume his position as flight instructor for the army at Garner field near Uvalde…”
The 1947 Clearwater, Florida, city directory, listed Haas as a cartoonist residing at 1160 1/2 Grove.
In American Newspaper Comics (2012), Albert Becattini said Haas ghosted the Tim Tyler’s Luck dailies from November 5, 1945 to August 30, 1947, and the Sundays from January 13, 1946 to August 24, 1947. Haas produced the weekly strip, Sunnyside, for the Western Newspaper Union syndicate, from May 6, 1948 to March 29, 1952.
In 1959 Haas moved in the animation field starting with Clutch Cargo, which was produced by his company, Cambria Studios, in Los Angeles, California. Haas continued his work with Hanna-Barbera.
Haas passed away January 18, 1978, in Los Angeles.
Labels: Ink-Slinger Profiles
Additional information about Haas can be found in a post I did on him on my blog last year.
Wednesday, November 05, 2014
Obscurity of the Day: Sunnyside
Here's the delightful strip Sunnyside by Clark Haas, who later went on to have the dubious distinction of helping to create one of the creepiest limited-animation TV series of all time, Clutch Cargo. I'm sure the show has its fans, but those disembodied lips make my skin crawl.
But let's get back to the strip. Sunnyside was created by Haas for Western Newspaper Union (obviously not Wheeler-Nicholson, which had been out of business for decades, despite the claim of the Wikipedia entry for Haas). WNU specialized in servicing rural weekly newspapers with a full slate of features, including a whole page of comic strips. Sunnyside was added to the line-up on May 6 1948 and ran until the demise of the syndicate itself, on March 29 1952.
As was the case with most of WNU's comic features, Sunnyside was quite well done. Placing the action in a diner affords Haas with a million gag opportunities which don't require continuing stories or a large cast, which are weaknesses for a weekly strip. Although there wasn't much about the strip to create a devoted fanbase, I'm sure the readers of the Cowpie City Discus-Thrower thoroughly enjoyed the strip.
By the way, you may notice that the strips above all have an unnecessary panel after the final story panel. This was WNU's way of allowing for different newspaper column widths, a nice nod to those rural client papers who did not necessarily keep up with the times regarding industry standards. A client paper could clip the extra column off, or use it to fill a gap depending on their paper's setup. What I find charming is that while some WNU strips used the same 'fill the gap' panel every week, Haas and some others would go to the extra trouble of drawing a new panel for each strip.
And, for what I know, Schlensker worked on dailies.
Tuesday, November 04, 2014
Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: F.M. Howarth
According to the 1880 census, Howarth was the oldest of four children. At age 15, he was a clerk, and his father was still a pattern maker. The family lived in Philadelphia at 326 Reed Street. The Geneva Daily Times (New York), September 23, 1908, said Howarth attended Central High School and “was engaged in mercantile business before taking up drawing as a profession.”
Howarth’s cartooning career began in 1884. A profile in Munsey’s, February 1894, told of his early newspaper career.
F. M. Howarth is a young man who is rapidly approaching the heights of fame, largely through the quaintness and individuality of his work. His style is not original, bordering too closely upon the Dutch school, but his adaptation of it to American ideas has proven very acceptable. The greatest fear for his future is that his work may, from its extreme conventionality, in time prove wearisome and cease to please.
Howarth was born in Philadelphia in 1864. He spent a good part of his early life in commercial pursuits, but by the time he had attained his nineteenth birthday he had acquired such a passion, coupled with some talent, for drawing, that he began furnishing comic sketches to the Philadelphia Call and other papers. These soon began to attract attention and yield a small income to the young man, and he was encouraged to abandon his distasteful calling of bookkeeping and devote himself exclusively to the art of comic illustrating. Since then his work has appeared in nearly all the illustrated periodicals and magazines in the country.
Peculiarly individual and very popular are the drawings of Mr. F. M. Howarth, who may rightly be called the originator of the “big heads and little bodies” figures, which we mentioned in our last article when dealing with the work of Mr. Sullivant. Mr. Howarth is one of those who have given “serial” pictures a distinct popularity, and hundreds of these series have appeared in the American Press. Mr. Howarth was born in 1864, and while serving as a clerk in a business house drifted into the profession of making jokes and comic pictures. “At first,” he says, “I did work for all the comic papers and the magazines which published comic stuff. My first work of any note was done for Life. In the course of four years I did a great deal for this paper, and it was from this material I gained my reputation. In 1891 I became a member of Puck’s staff of artists and writers, and remained with that paper until July, 1901, when I left to go to the New York World.” Mr. Howarth originates all his own ideas, and, he humorously adds, many of those used by other artists. His style is not particularly original, but it is a very successful adaptation to American ideas of the principles of the Dutch school. If there is a monotony in this style there is no monotony in the ideas, and there is no artist in America who has amused more people so continuously and so consistently as Howarth.Howarth wrote about his work in the New York Evening World, May 12, 1895:
I have been on earth now for thirty years, excepting a brief time on one occasion, when I was up in a balloon, and have spent most of these years in trying to find the easiest way to make a living.
After many experiments in different directions I came to the conclusion that being compelled to work, the work that would cause me the least trouble would be the writing of jokes and the drawing of comic pictures. Not that I loved this sort of work more, but that I loved the other kinds less.
Having come to this conclusion, I resolved that in order not to throw the least odium on others in the profession I would endeavor to make my drawings—and if possible the jokes—as different from the ordinary as my ability permitted. To some extent I have succeeded. I don’t know whether I am in receipt of the gratitude of my fellow-mechanics or not. They have never mentioned it.
Another point I made. Time being money, I resolved to save as much of it as possible. Therefore, in drawing my pictures I usually make my representations of the human figure from one-half to one-fourth its correct size. This has not only saved me money as represented by time, but the amount economized in ink and cardboard is beyond belief.
One more thing about my “sawed-off” people. Not being an artist by training (or otherwise), I had to do something to disarm suspicion, hence the little people. Now, no one can say to me, “That neck is too short,” “that arm is too long,” “that foot is entirely too large,” &c., &c. This is a great scheme for a sensitive mind.
I have done my best to keep the personal pronoun out of this article, as I do not in any way want to appear egotistical. I am not.
When I first started to write jokes and draw comic pictures, about eleven years ago, I was quite puffed up (especially when a picture was accepted), but that was knocked out of me in short order. I remember at the outset a very good woman, an old friend of my family, asked me what I was doing for a living. I told her I was making comic pictures. “Comic pictures,” said she; “comic pictures! What do you mean by comic pictures?” “Why,” said I, glowing with pride, “comic pictures are pictures that make fun of people.” Then with a look of horror upon her face and a voice choked with emotion, she spoke as if to the hardened criminals in the prisons she visited every Sunday morning.
“My son,” said she, “and would you like to die whilst in this occupation?” I didn’t want to die at all, but it killed all my egotism. A few other like experiences buried it, and I have never since had cause to resurrect it.
From my pictures of life in Africa some people may have supposed that I have “done” that portion of the globe. I have not. I have never been nearer that country than Lombard Boulevard, Philadelphia. By the way, I must not omit to state that I live in Philadelphia. Most of my New York friends say this is very funny of itself.
In ending I would say that if there are amy who, like my good old friend mentioned above, think that the making of comic pictures and the half-soiling and heeling of new and old jokes is akin to crime. I would like to offer this extenuating circumstance for my being in the profession, viz., my great ambition is to become a millionaire.A brief profile of Howarth appeared in Unknown Facts About Well-known People (1895).
Howarth, F.M., was born in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1864. Entered business life when fifteen, “got sick of it in five years, and as a means of keeping off starvation commenced to draw comic pictures for the various papers with some sort of success.” Now his laughable and recognizable sketches in Puck are one of the drawing cards of that magazine of fun. “I originate all my own jokes and about 75 per cent of those jokes used under the pictures drawn by the other artists of Puck. As an excuse for my style of drawing, will say that I have never received any art education.” Is a member of the Puck staff in New York City.Howarth was a “caricaturist for Puck” in the 1900 census. He married Marion in 1886 and they had two daughters, Edna (11) and Irene (5). They lived in Philadelphia at 6642 McCallum Street.
Howarth joined the World staff in July 1901, as advertised in the July 12 issue.
…Yes, Mr. H.M. Howarth, one of the most famous of American comic artists—the man who makes funny little people with big heads—has become a member of the Sunday World staff, and his first work will appear this week, along with that of Reed, Marnier, Ladendorf, Griffin and others.Many of his World comic strips can be viewed here.
Howarth’s books include Puck’s Domestic Comedies: Pictures in Colors and Black-and-White (Keppler & Schwarzmann, 1894); Funny Folks (E.P. Dutton, 1899); and The Trials of Lulu and Leander (W. & R. Chambers, 1905).
Howarth passed away September 22, 1908, at his home in Germantown, Philadelphia. The Geneva Daily Times reported his death.
Death of Well Known Cartoonist
Frank M. Howarth Passes Away At Home In Germantown.
Philadelphia, Pa., Sept. 23—Frank M. Howarth, a widely known cartoonist, died yesterday morning at his home, 308 High street, Germantown, a suburb of this city, after suffering two weeks from double pneumonia. He was 44 [sic; he was five days short of turning 44] years old.
During his early newspaper career Mr. Howarth was connected with the “Call” and “Item”, of this city. Recently he had drawn cartoons for the Chicago Tribune and had engaged in humorius [sic] colored syndicate work, his most noted series being those of “Mr. E.Z. Mark, and “Lulu and Leander.”
He was the first artist who ever drew a free hand sketch of the scene of a murder for a newspaper.
Mr. Howarth was born in this city, and educated at the Central High School. He was engaged in mercantile business before taking up drawing as a profession. He is survived by a widow, who was Miss Marion Lancaster, of this city, and two daughters, Mrs. Frederick C. Hitch and Miss Irene Howarth.Howarth was buried at Northwood Cemetery in Philadelphia.
Labels: Ink-Slinger Profiles
Monday, November 03, 2014
Obscurity of the Day: Mr. Bowers
Poor Mr. Bowers. In addition to being cursed with a huge bulbous balloon head, he has no end of trouble with those doggone tradesmen and assorted underlings who just don't seem to know their place. They're cocky, they charge too much, they even occasionally make a pass at Mr. Bowers' strikingly handsome (in a freakish, inflated-headed sort of way) wife.
I do love the artwork of F. M. Howarth, although I realize that it is definitely an acquired taste. Those finely-wrought giant heads of his make the presence of his signature seem like an utterly unnecessary appurtenance. Anyone can be an art-spotter for Mr. Howarth's work with a single glance.
Mister Bowers ran in Pulitzer's New York World from July 21 to November 10 1901, according to Ken Barker's World index. As we see above, though, Pulitzer's other flagship paper, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, apparently started running the feature well later, on October 20. Why this is I don't know. Perhaps the Post-Dispatch was running a local feature in that space earlier on.
Thanks to Cole Johnson for the scans!
Sunday, November 02, 2014
Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics
Labels: Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics