Friday, October 21, 2005
Obscurity of the Day - The Dubbville Foursome
Alfred Brewerton, if known at all, is known for his soap-opera strip Pam that ran 1928-1943. Those who have seen that strip tend to assume that Brewerton was not a particular competent cartoonist. Not true - the problem was that he was trying to draw the strip in a more realistic style than he was used to. Here is a neat golf strip called The Dubbville Foursome he did as a weekly panel; typically used on Sunday sports pages. The strip ran at least 1922-1927 and started with the Thompson Service. In 1925 it switched over to McNaught Syndicate. I think you'll agree that the art is quite nice. Brewerton's career is a bit of a mystery - he first makes an appearance at the New York World in 1903 doing a few very short-running strips. In the early teens he pops up again and does a minor strip and sports cartooning. Then he disappears once again from my radar until the early 20s. Anyone have biographical information on this fellow?
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
City Directory; Census."
I remember Brewerton as an editorial cartoonist for The Atlanta Journal in the 1930s, perhaps later. If his "Pam" was syndicated, it surprises me because I thought he just did it as a sideline. My brother, a commercial artist, considered Brewerton a poor craftsman, said he couldn't draw hands, etc. Fascinating to see that he could do something better, like the "Dubbville Foursome." I'll pass this on to my brother, who will be most interested.
Bob Willis, Fincastle, VA
Yup, "Pam" actually was syndicated. And I concur with your brother that it was pretty bad. In fact, everything I've seen by Brewerton that breaks out of his pleasant bigfoot cartooning style is wince-worthy to say the least. I always thought it funny that the Sunday topper strip to "Pam", called "Donald Dare The Demon Reporter", which was done in his 'cartoony' style, was so much better than the main strip. When you look at the two strips next to each other it's hard to believe they're by the same guy.
Georgia Public Broadcasting
Not 100% sure, but I think the Sunday ran in the Chicago Times. I have quite a few Sunday tearsheets but not from complete sections, so don't know the various papers.