Saturday, December 20, 2008


Herriman Saturday

We'll return to The Quints' Christmas on Monday.

Thursday, May 23 1907 -- The Examiner asks the question, "Which is the rowdier bunch -- McGraw's brawling New York Giants ball team or their fans?". It was becoming commonplace in this wild year for the Polo Grounds fans to assault umpires and stage riots on the slightest provocation.

Sunday, May 28 1907 -- Australian boxing champ Bill Squires has arrived in America looking to be the fighter who finally coaxes Jim Jeffries out of retirement. Failing that Squires will settle for current champ Tommy Burns. If you'd like a preview of the results of that matchup before Herriman reports on them, see Squires' bio here on Boxrec.


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Friday, December 19, 2008


The Quints' Christmas -- Day 4

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Thursday, December 18, 2008


The Quints' Christmas -- Day 3

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008


The Quints' Christmas -- Day 2

A Christmas Present For You: I just received an offer from that I can give up to three people one-month free subscriptions to their service. First three people that request it get them. Just send me your name and email address, either as a comment here or privately to

EDIT - Sorry, all the gift subs have been spoken for!

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008


The Quints' Christmas -- Day 1

Beginning today we're running the 1940 King Features Christmas story strip The Quints' Christmas. The title children are the famous Dionne Quintuplets, the first quints to survive infancy. The Dionnes were world famous at the time, and sadly were exploited unmercifully by their caretakers to make a fortune off their fame. You can read their sad story here on Wiki.

The strip was written by Brandon Walsh who handled the scripts for at least four of King's Christmas stories in addition to his regular writing duties on Little Annie Rooney. This 1940 Christmas strip would be his last and bears some marks of being a rush job. The first couple weeks of strips read as if there are parts of the narrative missing or out of order, and the story sort of oozes around aimlessly in a haze, almost like what you might expect a comic strip would read like if it was written by William S. Burroughs. Near the end it evolves into a truly bizarre anti-war message. Walsh was obviously deeply affected by the war raging in Europe, especially the merciless air bombing of England, but his attempt to weave this allegorically into his Christmas story -- well, I'll let you see how it plays out.

Art was provided by Royal King Cole, another regular on the King Christmas strips. He, too, would make 1940 his last year on this seasonal task.

I hope you enjoy this year's Christmas strip offering from Stripper's Guide. While it's no holiday classic, it's definitely worth a read for its unique strangeness. Enjoy!

Good summation. This is pretty dreadful, even for the era. Serious continuity issues, and that's before we get into the silly insipid pointless story. Never had a chance. Poor kids.

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Monday, December 15, 2008


Mystery Strips of E&P - "O" Listings

Tomorrow we'll start on a program of Christmas posts at the Stripper's Guide blog, but here's some mystery strips for you to ponder over the holidays. As you'll no doubt recall from previous installments of this series, the following features were all listed in the Editor & Publisher annual Syndicate Directory listings. Problem is that I have not been able to find these ones in any American newspaper. I'm looking for positive proof that (1) these features did indeed exist, (2) they are actually comics of some sort and weren't just mislabeled in E&P, and (3) they ran in U.S. newspapers. If you have any information about any mystery strip on this list please, please, please tell me all about it. And if you can provide positive proof that the mystery feature did indeed run in U.S. newspapers (a tearsheet is ideal proof) and qualifies for listing in the Stripper's Guide index, you can be the recipient of a goodie box chock full of all manner of comic strip ephemera -- could be reprint books, old tearsheets, magazines, original art or all of the above. Trust me that my goodie boxes do not disappoint! (SORRY - as of 2018 goodie boxes are sadly no longer available - I now live in Canada and our postal rates are so outrageous that I cannot afford to send out goodie boxes - SORRY!)

If you prefer to contact me privately rather than posting a comment on the blog, send it to Please be sure to mention Stripper's Guide in your subject line or I may miss your message in amongst all the spam.

Here's the mystery features starting with letter "O" as in "Oh no! More mysteries!". Each listing has the title, years advertised, creator(s), syndicate and format. Sorry, I'd put these in a more attractive tabular form, but Blogger plays havoc with tables:

O'Malley's Law, 1979-83, Scott Smith, Feature Associates, weekly strip
O. Johnny, 1960-63, Ghilchik, Sun News Features, daily strip (British feature by David Ghilchik?)
O.O., 1978-81, Stan Meritakis, self-syndicated, daily strip
Odd But So, 1950-54, Joe Fabian, Words & Pictures Syndicate, daily panel
Odd Ball, 1983-93, J. Kuchera, Oceanic Press Service, weekly strip
Odd Truths, 1935, Carl Kuhn, Thompson Service, daily panel (Canadian?)
Oddities of Nature, 1947-61, Chuck Thorndike, A.S. Curtis Features, weekly panel (Found! in Miami Herald)
Oddities of the News, 1937-42, Al Blum and Alex Boon, General Features, weekly panel [found! by Art Lortie in Hastings News]
Odditowns, 1935, Mike Brady, Allied Features, daily panel
Oddograms, 1935, James Burke and Edward Mason, Allied Features, daily panel
Offline, 1996-2005, Herb Stansbury, Davy Associates, daily and Sunday strip (found by Ray Bottorf Jr., but is reprints of Smart Chart [1970-83] and seemingly marketed only outside the US)
Office Frolics, 1979, Art McCourt, Feature Associates, weekly
Oh! Oswald, 1948-52, Jean Leo and Martine Martin, Press Alliance, daily
Olaf, 1961, R.D. Hassler, Chicgo Tribune-NY News Syndicate, daily strip
Old Is, 1979, Dominic Poelsma and Marcella Markham, NY Times Special Features, daily panel (found! by Ray Bottorff Jr. in Wilkes Barre Times-Leader)
The Old South, 1936, Wilbur G. Kurtz, Triton Syndicate, daily panel
Old Timer, 1939, Ed Wheelan, Bell Syndicate, daily panel
Oliver Twist, 1939, C. David Vormelker, Jolyon Features, daily strip
On The Beat, 1998-99, Oliver Gaspirtz, self-syndicated, weekly panel (apparently a magazine feature, not eligible for SG index)
On The Way Out, 1991, Craig Rogers, Sparks Syndication, weekly
One Liners, 1973, Henny Youngman, N.E. Coan, daily panel
One Up, 1963-66, Lew Saw, National Newspaper Service, daily strip (found by Ray Bottorff Jr. but syndicate thru Toronto Star to Canadian papers only -- did NNS manage to find any clients in the US?)
One For The Road, 1976-79, Kern Pederson, Trans World News, weekly panel
Oscar the Giraffe, 1946, R.S. Matz, Unique Features, daily strip
Oscy, 1985-88, Mike Liper, United Cartoonist Syndicate, daily
Otto Knox, 1924, Sidney Light, Hoosier News Service, panel
Our America, 1938-39, Frederick Polley, Esquire Features, weekly panel (found by Ray Bottorff Jr. but it is a text history column with illustration, not eligible)
Our Country Cousins, 1939, Joe Buresch, National Art Features, daily panel
Our Faith, 1955-61, Carl Pfeufer, Eric Jon Associates, weekly panel
Our Oscar, 1971, Edgar Allen Jr., Register & Tribune Syndicate, daily panel (found! by Ray Bottorff Jr. in Baytown Sun)
Our Paper Boy, 1976-78, Kern Pederson, Trans World News, weekly panel
Our Parish, 1959-79, Peg O'Connell aka Margaret Ahern, National Catholic Welfare Conference, weekly panel (so far found only in Catholic newspapers, still looking for it in a mainstream newspaper)
Out Of This World, 1956, Charles Addams, McClure Syndicate, Sunday panel (Found by D.D. Degg in Pasadena Independent - thanks DD!)
Over Fifty, 1989-94, Keith M. Manzella, Newspaper Features, daily strip
Overheard At America's Lunch Counters, 1985, Susan Catherine, Willow Creek Syndicate, weekly


"Out of This World" by Chas Addams
I heard about this not all that long ago and was stunned that it was not in all the history books. I mean, c'mon, Charles Addams!
But, unbelievably, I guess it wasn't all that popular.
I did find it in the Pasadena (Ca.) Independent on June 17, and July 1, 1956, both on the Editorial page (pg A2) and both on a Sunday.
Also on Monday January 2, 1956 it ran, also on the editorial page, in the San Antonio Express (pg 4A).
The Express deleted all the copyright notices.
Good job finding those Addams samples DD. I did a few searches for this series and that crappy newspaperarchive search kept ignoring everything but the word 'world' and giving me thousands of hits. What's your secret?

I'll put together a goodie package for you. Already have your address.

Thanks again, Allan
Odd Ball, 1983-93, J. Kuchera, Oceanic Press Service, weekly strip

Looks like it is the same material as this item at MSU's comic art collection:

Oddballs / John Kuchera. -- Rochester, N.Y. : Kuchera, 1985.
-- 44 p. : ill. ; 26 cm. -- In title, second 'd' reversed,
'a' upside-down, and 's' reversed.
1. Balls (Sporting goods)--Comic books, strips, etc. I.
Kuchera, John. Call no.: PN6727.K815O3 1985
Offline, 1996-2005, Herb Stansbury, Davy Associates, daily and Sunday strip

Here are some possible clues to where to find this strip:

Davy Debuts 'Dude' Comic
By E&P Staff
Publication: Editor & Publisher
Date: Friday, May 28 2004
Davy Associates has introduced "Dude," a weekly comic starring a young office worker. It's by Herb Stansbury, who also draws "Offline" for the San Clemente, Calif.-based syndicate.

Other features being offered by Davy include the topical "Topics" cartoon by Harley Schwadron and a weekly crossword puzzle by Charles Preston.

I wonder if this was seen in regional business papers and magazines throughout the country?
Going back to the Offline panel...

Here is the syndicate, perhaps the people there know:

Davy Associates
215 Avenida Del Mar # E
Daytime Number: (949) 498-0833
Our Parish, 1959-79, Peg O'Connell then Margaret Ahern, National Catholic Welfare Conference, weekly panel

Peg was an alias for Maragret, here is her bio from her son:

I won't reprint the bio here, but I am almost positive this strip could have been syndicated to Catholic newsletters, church papers. magazines, et al.

my best
On The Beat, 1998-99, Oliver Gaspirtz, self-syndicated, weekly panel

I would be willing to bet this went to police related magazines:

Gaspirtz bio

And his website:
Hi Ray --
Thanks very much for all the research you did.

Oddballs -- I ordered a copy of the book. We'll see if that sheds any light on the matter.

Offline/Dude -- I found that same press release. Unfortunately it appears that Davy Associates is no more, though. They stopped advertising in E&P after 2005 and I tried the phone number, it's disconnected. Since there was a crossword puzzle offered I figured it might have catered to weekly papers, but no luck finding any that used their stuff. Perhaps some Davy alum will see this and come forward with some info. But keep reading below -- maybe Davy was online material only.

Our Parish -- I assumed it was a church paper feature as well, and her bio seems to support that. I went ahead and ordered a copy of the reprint book, though, to see if it sheds any more light on the matter. Thanks for the bio link.

On The Beat -- excellent links! I'd say that feature can be stricken as Stripper's Guide material based on that bio. Also note the Davy Associates link with the press release. If Gaspirtz is saying he has done exclusively online content since 2000, and he had a feature with Davy, ergo Davy was some sort of Internet only syndicate? Maybe we're done with Davy after all (for Stripper's Guide indexing that is).

Again, thanks very much for all the research you did Ray.

"Overheard At America's Lunch Counters" definitely existed and produced at least one collection ( It ran in one of the Seattle alternative weeklies...either The Stranger or The Rocket, and may have been syndicated to a few other papers. She also co-wrote an issue of Joe Sacco's first series, YAHOO.
Hi Devlin -
I agree, "Lunch Counters" did indeed run in some alternative papers. We're looking for appearances in 'mainstream' papers. Alt-paper appearances don't qualify for listing in my index.

Allan, I go through Google News.
Open up newspaperarchive in a window and minimize.
Open up Google News in a new window.
Search for item. Use quotation marks.
"Out of this World" "charles addams"
in the search box brought up the feature because Charles Addams was a selling point and his name was printed with the panel title.
"Out of this world"
in the search box brings up a heck of a lot more hits, reducing the search to 1955 - 1955 reduces the search to almost 2,000 hits.
The more unique the title, the more complete the information, the better.
When you find a likely candidate click on the link and it will open because you have already opened newspaperarchive.
Due to space limitations, I leave it to you to fine-tune the search methods.
Hi DD -
I'm confused (a semi-permanent state). Does Google News search the newspaperarchive database with its own search engine, or does it just send on the request to NA's search engine? In other words, do you get better/different results from Google? If that's the case then hosannas are in order because NA's search engine is horribly buggy. I also I hate the 'feature' of fuzzy searches (which would be useful IF I could turn it off when I don't want it).

"Does Google News search the newspaperarchive database with its own search engine..."
Uhhh, you tell me Allan.
I'm a 20th Century Man who's made it to the 21st Century. I'm still trying to figure out how they get those big tubes into a monitor that's only an inch or two deep.
>I agree, "Lunch Counters" did >indeed run in some alternative >papers. We're looking for >appearances in 'mainstream' papers. >Alt-paper appearances don't qualify >for listing in my index.

so how do you determine what's mainstream and what alternative?
Hi Steven -
While there's some gray area between alternative papers and mainstream ones, I consider a paper to be 'alternative' if (1) it focuses specifically on a particular lifestyle or audience (i.e. sexual persuasion, religious persuasion etc.), or (2) it does not cover general interest news to the extent of a 'mainstream' paper -- in other words if it focuses on entertainment, humor or what have you rather than reporting actual news. Some alt-papers give a nod to reporting news. Those free papers that are popping up in Washington, New York and Boston, for instance, do cover a news story or two in each issue, but pretty much just as a teaser to get people to pick them up. Inside is mostly restaurant, music and other entertainment stuff. Close to a real newspaper, but not quite there.

Yes, I know there is plenty of room for argument on my definition.

Oh, I know the line has to be drawn somewhere. and of course, it's going to be the weeklies that are the most problem. Is the village Voice mainstream or alternative? Each Village Other? etc etc -- (and this may mean you have to determine what news is.... grin ).

(oh, and Peg is a nickname for Margaret, not an alias)

Steven Rowe
Hi Steven --
The Voice is right in that gray area, I've been meaning for a long time to take a serious look at it to determine whether or not its something I should index. The Other I think more comfortably fits in the alt-paper column based on issues I've seen.

By the way, the creator's alias for Our Parish is the last name -- O'Connell vs. Ahern.

An update -- the Our Parish and Oddballs reprint books arrived in the mail. Unfortunately neither book discusses any specific papers running the features, so we're no further on these two.

Here's another one to add to this list.
It's a daily panel called "Our Ancestors" and it ran from 1961-1965. It was created and drawn by editorial cartoonist Richard Q. Yardley. The source for this is Yardley's obit from the NY Times.
Hi Susan --
It's not a mystery strip, though. It ran in many papers and I've documented it thoroughly for the index.
Oh Oswald is original from France, although Jean Léo was born in Belgium. In France the comic was called "Oscar" and appeared first in Le Parisien Libéré in 1947. In ran 20 years in dozens of newspapers.
Since I have nothing better to do today it seems, I decided to look at the O's again after a 13-year hiatus. Especially since keeps adding newspapers.

Overheard At America's Lunch Counters, 1985, Susan Catherine, Willow Creek Syndicate, weekly
I found a reference to a 1989 book by this author here:

Google Books say about the book:
"A compilation of a cartoon which ran as a regular feature in periodicals in Helsinki, Finland, Bordeaux, France, and Vancouver, Canada, as well as a number of U.S. periodicals."

The feature and variations of it appeared in a number of comic book publications:

And mini-comics:

So it's definitely a comic book feature. She even made Jerry Bails' Who's Who:

So far no comic strip finds.

Based on the content and the artwork, the most likely place this might have shown up in 1985 would have been alternate press weekly newspapers, which are pretty much ignored by the major newspaper repo websites.

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr
Our Oscar, 1971, Edgar Allen Jr., Register & Tribune Syndicate, daily panel

The Baytown Sun (Baytown, Texas), Thursday, January 27, 1972, p.1:
April 27, 1971, p.1:
July 3, 1972, p.1:

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr
Our America, 1938-39, Frederick Polley, Esquire Features, weekly panel

Found! But...I'll leave it to you Allan if you consider this a "comic" feature:
The Kansas City Star (Kansas City, Missouri), Sunday, November 13, 1938, p.10D:

February 5, 1939, p.10D:

October 8, 1939, p.12D:

The Charlotte News (Charlotte, North Carolina) Sunday, May 26, 1940, p.5C:

October 13, 1940, p.8-C:

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr
One Up, 1963-66, Lew Saw, National Newspaper Service, daily strip

Found! But only in Canadian newspapers.

Earliest found:
Edmonton Journal (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), Wednesday, January 2, 1963. p.58:

Latest found:
December 31, 1965, p.13:

And found numerous times in between multiple Canadian newspapers.

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr
Old Is, 1979, Dominic Poelsma and Marcella Markham, NY Times Special Features, daily panel


In U.K.:
Evening Standard (London, Greater London, England), Tuesday, May 29, 1979, p.23:

Earliest found:
The Times Leader (Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania), Monday, February 19, 1979, p.3B:

Oldest found:
The Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, California), Saturday, January 26, 1980, p.22:

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr
Offline, 1996-2005, Herb Stansbury, Davy Associates, daily and Sunday strip

Found! But only in Australian newspapers. Actually titled: Off-Line.

The Sydney Morning Sun-Herald (Sydney, New South Wales, Australia), Sunday, October 6, 1996, p.67:

December 22, 1996, p.68:

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr
O'Malley's Law, 1979-83, Scott Smith, Feature Associates, weekly strip

Found? An article about the comic strip states in March 1979, Feature Associates bought the strip and it appeared in 47 per this article.

The Advocate-Messenger (Danville, Kentucky), Sunday, October 14, 1979, The Kentucky Advocate Magazine, p.6:

Though it is featured in that article, the comic strip does not appear in this newspaper after the article.

my best
-Ray Bottorff Jr

Thanks for tracking a bunch down, Ray! As regards Off-Line, it turns out Davy Associates was peddling reprints of Smart Chart.

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Sunday, December 14, 2008


Jim Ivey's Sunday Comics

Jim Ivey's new book, Graphic Shorthand, is available from for $19.95 plus shipping, or you can order direct from Ivey for $25 postpaid. Jim Ivey teaches the fundamentals of cartooning in his own inimitable style. The book is 128 pages, coil-bound. Send your order to:

Jim Ivey
5840 Dahlia Dr. #7
Orlando FL 32807

Also still available, Jim Ivey's career retrospective Cartoons I Liked, available on or direct from Jim Ivey for $20 postpaid. When ordered from Ivey direct, either book will include an original Ivey sketch.


Hello, Allan----Well, now Jim Ivey has to share his WWII "naughty" comic strip with us, or I'm sure we'll always feel we've missed something!-----Cole Johnson.
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