Thursday, July 14, 2016


Ink-Slinger Profiles by Alex Jay: Walter J. Enright


Walter Joseph Enright was born in Chicago, Illinois, on July 3, 1879, according to Who Was Who in America with World Notables, Volume V, 1969–1973.

In the 1880 U.S. Federal Census, Enright was the sixth of eight children born to John W. and Mary B. (Croghan), both Irish emigrants. His father was associated with wholesale liquor. The family resided in Chicago.

Enright was an artist in the 1900 census. He was in parents’ household and lived in Chicago at 715 Jackson Street. Who Was Who said Enright was educated in Chicago at the Armour Institute of Technology and studied at the Art Institute. Enright was listed in the American Art Annuals for 1907–1908 and 1909–1910.

According to the Cook County, Illinois, Marriage Index, at, Enright married Maginel Wright on October 26, 1904 in Oak Park, Illinois. Maginel was an illustrator and younger sister of architect Frank Lloyd Wright. Enright illustrated L. Frank Baum’s Father Goose’s Year Book: Quaint Quacks and Feathered Shafts for Mature Children. Maginel illustrated Laura Bancroft’s Policeman Bluejay. Both books were published in 1907. 

Enright’s home in the 1910 census was Manhattan, New York City at 561 West 141st Street. Enright and his wife had a two-year-old daughter, Elizabeth who would become an illustrator. Husband and wife were magazine illustrators. Who Was Who named some of the magazines with his art: Life, Judge, Scribner’s and Collier’s. He also contributed to Everybody’s Magazine.

Scribner’s 12/1920

Enright served during World War I as a first lieutenant. He was stationed in France from July 21, 1918 to May 5, 1919 and was honorably discharged May 23, 1919. His residence at the time was 20 West 10th Street in Manhattan.

Aerial Age Weekly noted Enright’s early service in its February 4, 1918 issue: “To be First Lieutenants, Aviation Section, Signal Reserve: …Walter J. Enright”, and the issued dated February 11, 1918: “Walter Joseph Enright appointed first lieutenant; report to Aviation Experimental School, Langley Field, Hampton, Va.”

The 1920 census recorded illustrator Enright, who lived alone, in Manhattan at 23 East 9th Street. Sometime after the census, Enright and his wife divorced.

Enright’s second marriage was reported in The Fourth Estate, July 8, 1922.

Walter J. Enright of the New York World staff and well known as an illustrator and cartoonist, and Miss Carroll McComas, actress, were married in New York this week. The bride’s mother, Alice Moore McComas, is the author of “Travel Sketches” and many short stories. Mr. Enright served through the war in the aviation service of the Second Army Corps with the rank of first lieutenant.
Enright and Carroll, an Albuquerque native, returned from Havana, Cuba, on March 13, 1922. Their home address was 18 Gramercy Park in Manhattan.

A passenger list said Enright, who was married, returned alone from Havana on January 3, 1925. His residence was 81 Irving Place, Manhattan.

American Newspaper Comics (2012) said Enright produced two series: Once Upon a Time ran from June 1, 1925 to August 5, 1926, and Here and Thereabouts which debuted May 12 and ended September 22, 1929.

On June 9, 1928, the New York Times reported Enright’s divorce.

After a visit to Bermuda, Enright arrived in New York on February 4, 1929. He was single and resided at 1 West 67th Street, New York City. Newspaper cartoonist Enright’s address was the same in the 1930 census.

Enright’s third marriage was to Brooklyn native, Rae. The couple returned from Bermuda on March 26, 1932. Their home was in New York City at 1 West 67th Street.

The 1940 census listed Enright and Rae in Delray Beach, Florida, at 201 South Swinton Avenue. In 1935 they resided in Brooklyn. Enright continued work as a newspaper cartoonist. At some point he adopted the pseudonym, W.J. Pat Enright which was used on his two books, Al Alligator and How He Learned to Play the Banjo (1947) and Sailor Jim’s Cave: A Mystery of Buried Treasure in Florida (1951).

Who Was Who said Enright was with the New York World from 1927 to 1930, and the New York American from 1930 to 1936. The New York Times said Enright was with the Miami Herald from 1933 to 1943, and the Palm Beach Post from 1943 to 1948.

The 1945 Florida state census recorded Enright and wife in Delray Beach on North Ocean Boulevard.

Enright passed away January 14, 1969, in Delray Beach, as reported by the New York Times, June 20.

—Alex Jay


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