Saturday, February 21, 2015


Herriman Saturday

Thursday, September 17 1908 -- Usually when government swindles are unearthed, the rats go scurrying away. Not so with the "Solid Three", who are holding their heads high regarding the sweetheart bond sale thus far.

The situation in a nutshell: County commissioners Patterson, Eldridge and Wilson, dubbed the "Solid Three", put together a bond issue for the county and sold it off, probably to favored friends, at a high interest rate. They did this without proper public meetings and without going through the normal channels to determine a fair interest rate. On discovering this breach of the public trust, Angelenos were, not too surprisingly, up in arms.


Comments: Post a Comment

Friday, February 20, 2015


Sci-Friday starring Connie

Connie, July 24 1938, courtesy of Cole Johnson. 
Follow the Connie story every Friday here on Stripper's Guide.

This is the final sci-fi Connie story we have available from Cole Johnson. If anyone out there can contribute scans of another complete Connie story (later than 3/26/1939), or can offer another sci-fi strip to take its place on Sci-Fridays, I'd be delighted and grateful to hear from you! Note that we elitists do not generally use digital microfilm material here on Stripper's Guide, so we would need sharp 300-600 dpi scans from newspaper tearsheets or syndicate proofs. 


The faces are a bit more expresive in this installment than was the norm.
Post a Comment

Thursday, February 19, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Loy Byrnes/Roy B. Nyles

According to the Grand Comics Database, “Roy B. Nyles” was the anagram pseudonym of Loy Byrnes. Who’s Who of American Comic Strip Producers said Byrnes was born 1906 in Jersey City, New Jersey. The 1940 U.S. Federal Census, which recorded Byrnes’ name as “Lloyd Burns”, said he was 34 years old and a New York-born cartoonist. At the time, Byrnes resided with fellow cartoonist Gus Jud (Little Dave) and Jud’s parents at 182-17 91 Avenue in Queens, New York. Byrnes’ highest level of education was the eighth grade. Maybe the name Loy was short for Aloysius or Loyal.

Byrnes has not yet been found in the 1910, 1920 and 1930 censuses. A World War II draft card or other military record for him has not been found.

The New York Post, June 2, 1945, said a young Byrnes worked in the art department of the New York World, and “He was just 14 when he hit the Sunday section with a children’s feature that ran for almost three years.”

The New Yorker, September 14, 1929, published Byrnes only cartoon for that magazine.

In 1930, Byrnes illustrated the book, The Adventures of a Brownie.

According to American Newspaper Comics (2012), Byrnes took over Gus Edson’s Streaky, from 1937 to May 21, 1939, and its topper, Dopey Dildock, from November 1935 to 1939.

As Roy B. Nyles, Byrnes produced the strip Silly Willie for Syndicated Features. The strip ran from July 13, 1936 to March 8, 1937. It later saw print in the comic book, Best Comics, numbers 1, 2, 3 and 4, from November 1939 to February 1940.

Byrnes’ comic strip Spunkie ran from December 16, 1940 to March 21, 1942. Also in the 1940s, he assisted on Nancy.

The Catalog of Copyright Entries, Part 4, Works of Art, Etc. 1940 New Series, Volume 35, Number 8, had this entry:

Byrnes, Loy.* 7287-7289 Buzz Sawyer: Accepts an assignment, 2.— One chosen, 1. — Receives his secret code card, 3. © 1 c. each July 26, 1940 ; G 36210-36212.
According to the New York Times, January 26, 1942, Byrnes was one of a hundred cartoonists who contributed posters to United China Relief’s exhibition at the Grand Central Art Galleries in the Hotel Gotham.

Byrnes’ pantomime strip, Tootsie, appeared in Good Housekeeping magazine; it can viewed in the following issues: July 1945, October 1945, November 1945, and January 1946.

The Post, June 2, 1945, touted Byrnes’ new comic strip.
Meet Punchy and Judy, a Comic ‘Comic’ Strip
For 10 years Loy Byrnes collected notes and ideas and drew sketches for a comic strip. He had already found the appropriate title, “Punchy and Judy.” At last he decided he had hammered out enough work of the pay-dirt variety.
The result is a comic “comic” strip, minus blood, thunder and gunfire, destined for laughs instead of sobs.
Punchy is a sparring partner in a gymnasium; Judy is a chocolate-dipper who excels at applying curlycues to the iced tops of bon-bons. Together they form a romantic comedy team whose adventures start in The Post Monday June 4.
A little man with a sardonic wit, Loy Byrnes at 39 has had almost 20 years of cartoon experience. There was no preliminary period of hesitation when he chose a career. Decorating school blackboards led with unswerving logic to a job in the art department of the old New York World. He was just 14 when he hit the Sunday section with a children’s feature that ran for almost three years.
Under pressure Byrnes admits that he once studied briefly at the Art Students League, has turned out a number of successful features, is a bachelor, belongs to the Society of Illustrators and is a member of the Museum of Modern Art. 
Probe him on the origin of his idea and he shudders. “Ask me something simple,” he begs, “like maybe explaining the Theory of Relativity. All I can tell you is that a guy takes a piece of paper and pencil and then beats his brains out until he gets ideas—that’s all.”
His characters were not patterned after any one in particular but are a composite drawn from the “strata of humanity that editorial writers fondly refer to as ‘the backbone of the nation.’”
When at work Byrnes whistles softly to himself. The harder the thinking, the more intricate the tune. In the groove he can, he boasts, rip off hot licks that are the everlasting envy of his less musically gifted contemporaries.
He is deliberately vague when questioned about his past activities and accomplishments. “Everything I’ve done until now,” he insists, “was strictly warming up for ‘Punchy and Judy.’”
The Post, November 7, 1945, noted a recent gathering of cartoonists.
At the Shor shindig a book of beautiful woodland scenes contributed by the assembled artists was presented to Bugs after some salty speeches by E. Sims Campbell, Stan McGovern, Loy Byrnes, Milt Caniff and Cas Adams.
Thirteen days later, Byrnes passed away November 20, 1945, in New York City. His death was reported the same day in the Post.
Loy Byrnes, Post Cartoonist, Dies—Drew Punchy and Judy 
Loy Byrnes, cartoonist of the Punch and Judy strip in The Post, died today in Mt. Sinai Hospital at the age of 40.
Funeral services will be held tomorrow at 10 a.m. at the Joseph McAllister Funeral Parlor, 202 E. 39th St., followed by a mass of requiem at St. Agnes Church, 141 E. 43d St. Burial will be in Holy Name Cemetery, Jersey City.
Byrnes is survived by an aunt, Mrs. Nellie Mitchell, of Teaneck.

—Alex Jay


His name was Aloysius
He had a brother Robert Byrnes. His dad died when he was young--in 1913 from consumption-after a 5 year battle with it.
Post a Comment

Wednesday, February 18, 2015


The Comics of Syndicated Features: Silly Willie

Silly Willie is about as generic a strip as you can imagine about a not-too-bright little nebbish. That sort of character was all over the comics in the 1930s (not to mention most other eras), and Silly Willie certainly didn't bring anything original to the table, unless you count the flowerpot hat he sported.

The name Roy B. Nyles sounds very familiar to me, but I looked through my files and checked online, and I can't find a peep about him. Not even sure now that's he's a real person. (Tomorrow his identity will be revealed, courtesy of Alex Jay).

Silly Willie ran for the whole run of the Syndicated Features tabloid section, July 13 1936 to March 8 1937.


Comments: Post a Comment

Tuesday, February 17, 2015


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Ray McGill

Julian Ray McGill was born in Dawson, Georgia, based on the 1900 U.S. Federal Census which recorded his birth as “May 1889”. On his World War I and II draft cards, the birth date was November 24, 1891. In the census he was the oldest of two children born to John, a grocer, and Eddie [Edna]. The family resided in Dawson on Stonewall South.

In the 1910 census, the family remained in Dawson at 343 Lee Street. McGill was the oldest of three. Information regarding McGill’s education and art training has not been found.

McGill signed his World War I draft card on June 5, 1917. His address was 5104 Sheridan Road in Chicago, Illinois. He was an artist at International Harvester Company. His description was medium height and build with brown eyes and ark brown hair.

The Harvester World, January 1918, published McGill’s cartoon and photograph. The February issue also had a McGill cartoon.

 Harvester World 1/1918

Harvester World 2/1918

During 1918, Cartoons Magazine published several of McGill’s cartoons about Camp Grant here, here and here, and noted his prize.

Editor & Publisher, August 21, 1919, reported McGill’s new job.

Ray McGill, of Dawson, Ga., has been appointed local Cartoonist on The Atlanta Georgian. He has just returned from service overseas. Mr. McGill was formerly with the International Harvester Co., Chicago; also free lanced in Chicago.
The February 5, 1920 issue of E&P noted McGill’s new feature.
Atlanta, Feb. 4.—Ray McGill, cartoonist of the Georgian, has started a feature in the Sunday American that bids fair to become popular. Every Sunday one sees most of the good things there are to see in Atlanta, in McGill’s “Atlanta Over the Top” car.
McGill’s home, in the 1920 census, was in Atlanta, Georgia at 164 Ivy Street. He was a cartoonist for a daily paper. At some point he moved to New York City where he produced the strip, Brodie Betts, which ran from August 21, 1924 to June 13, 1924.

McGill was pictured in the 1928 book, What’s in the New York Evening Journal.

Creator of “Journalisms”
A comic artist with a keen sense of news! He draws a daily strip for Evening Journal readers giving them a humorous view of current happenings. McGill has created something NEW in cartoons—no comic strip in American newspapers is comparable to it. Evening Journal readers get a “big kick” out of McGill’s “Journalisms” because each drawing is up to the last minute in news interest.
According to the 1930 census, McGill took up residence at 119 West 55th Street in Manhattan, New York City. American Newspaper Comics (2012) said he was an assistant on Lank Leonard’s Mickey Finn. In the late 1940s, McGill assisted on Chic Young’s Blondie.

McGill produced Polly Wow, for Syndicated Features, which ran from July 13, 1936 to March 8 1937. The strip saw print in the comic book, Best Comics, issues 1, 2, 3 and 4, from November 1939 to February 1940.

In 1940, freelance cartoonist McGill resided at 101 West 55th Street in Manhattan. The census said his highest level of education was the eighth grade.

On April 26, 1942, McGill signed his World War II draft card. His address did not change. He was employed at Johnstone & Cushing, the studio specializing in advertising 

McGill passed away September 20, 1963 in Boynton Beach, Florida. His death was reported in the Palm Beach Post (Florida) two days later.

Mr. McGill, 71, of 22 NE 7th Ave., Delray Beach, who was associated with Chic Young, creator of the comic strip “Blondie,” of King Features Syndicate, died Friday night [September 20] at Bethesda Memorial Hospital following a short illness.
He was the cartoonist of two [sic; it was one strip] other comic strips carried by the syndicate, “Colonel Potterby” and “The Duchess.”
He was the editorial cartoonist for the Atlanta Journal many years ago and also current events cartoonist for the New York Journal American.
He is survived by his 97-year-old mother, Mrs. Edna McGill, of Dawson, Ga.; one brother Edward McGill, former society photographer with the Chicago Tribune, at Morton Grove, Ill.; one nephew, Fulford McGill, Fort Lauderdale; two cousins, Miss Bess Fouche, McDonough, Ga., and Alfred Fouche, of Atlanta.
Funeral services will be held at the Scobee Funeral Home at 11 am Monday, with Rev. J. Marvin Sweat officiating.

—Alex Jay


Comments: Post a Comment

Monday, February 16, 2015


The Comics of Syndicated Features: Peggy Wow

Ray McGill flitted around the cartooning world for many decades. He did editorial cartoons and a very minor syndicated strip for Hearst, comic book work in the 40s, and assisted on major strips Mickey Finn and Blondie (regarding the latter, his obit claims that he produced the topper Colonel Potterby and the Duchess, which I thought was handled by Jim Raymond).

His contribution to the Syndicated Features tabloid section was Peggy Wow, a strip about a cute blonde Hollywood secretary cum agent whose star client also happens to be her boyfriend. Although the setup sounds like a good one, Ray McGill seemed to have trouble constructing gags. Read the samples above and tell me that both those strips don't suffer from a weird sort of subject drift on the third tier of panels. McGill racks up the pins well enough, but when he throws the ball, it bounces into the next lane. Later in the run Peggy gets involved in a continuity about a missing judge, and that seemed to help McGill focus his work better. Unfortunately, McGill's growth as a cartoonist did not help to save Syndicated Features.

Peggy Wow appeared throughout the entire publishing history of the Syndicated Features tabloid section, from July 13 1936 to March 8 1937.


You're right about the lame third row...I didn't get the joke in the second comic.
Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Subscribe to
Posts [Atom]