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Thumbnail for Newspaper Comic StripsNewspaper comic strips debuted in North America in the later 19th century. The Yellow Kid is credited as the first and thankfully we have examples here!

Slowly the the art form developed into what we now all recognize as a comic strip.

Another strip we have in our collection is Gasoline Alley which appeared in 1918 and is still going strong. Making it one of longest running comic strips.

Comic strips generally fall into two different categories: daily and Sunday. The Sunday strips are normally in color, whereas the daily ones are predominately black and white.

Most are strips are syndicated, but there are a few which only appear in one newspaper.

Anyway, enough of the lecture, have a rummage around and see what goodies you can find.
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Newspaper Comic Strips

Adam Ames

Thumbnail for Adam AmesAdam Ames was a short-lived strip lasting from 1959 to 1962. The story is pure soap opera revolving around Adam Ames, a widower, his housekeeper and two teenage children. Although the strip is not well know, its artist most certainly is!

Adam Ames was drawn by Lou Fine. He is considered one of the greatest artists working during the the Golden Age of comic books. Fine joined the Eisner-Iger comic book shop in 1938, where he contributed to Wilton of the West, The Count of Monte Cristo, and most famously the Flame.

He then finished his comic book career drawing for Quality Comics, where he illustrated the Black Condor, Stormy Foster, and Uncle Sam. In 1944 he left comic books to draw Sunday advertising strips, presumably for financial reasons. During this period he worked extensively with Don Komisarow. Their creations include 'Charlie McCarthy' and 'Mr. Coffee Nerves' for Chase and Sanborn Coffee, and 'Sam Spade' for Wildroot Cream Oil.

Adam Ames was created late in Fine's career and was followed by his last strip, a complete change of genre with private eye Peter Scratch. Will Eisner, called Lou Fine one of the greatest draftsmen ever. Joe Simon, named him his: "favorite artist.... He was also Jack Kirby's favorite artist. I know that Jack was a fan of and greatly influenced by Fine's work". Can there be higher praise?
Comic Strip Name:Adam Ames
Strips Available:5
Latest Strip:Adam Ames 1960-10-05 - 1961-02-11
Categories:Mixed Bag

Angel Face

Thumbnail for Angel FaceAngel Face is a short lived series of newspaper panels, featuring a little girl who either by accident, or by design tends to say the wrong thing at the wrong time. If she is not doing that, then Angel is up to some sort of mischief. Although at first sight the cartoons appear to be targeted at children, the humor is actually aimed at adults. Angel Face is rather obscure, however it is of interest as the artist is Gene Hazleton.

Hazleton joined Disney in 1939 where his animation work can be seen with the goat kids in Fantasia along with the 'Pleasure Island' sequence in Pinocchio. He left Disney in 1941 to join Robert Clampett at Warner Bros. Hazelton then spent many years at MGM. There he worked with Hanna and Barbera on Tom & Jerry, and also on the Tex Avery shorts.

When MGM closed its animated studio, Hazleton freelanced and it was at this period that he created Angel Face. The last big move was to Hanna-Barbera, where for many years he was the head artist of the newspaper comic department. Initially Hazleton supervised The Flintstones and Yogi Bear strips, but then took over both the writing and drawing of them. He also helped on the animation side and is credited with creating both Pebbles and Bamm Bamm, for the Flintstones. Gene Hazleton died 6 April 2005, aged 85.
Comic Strip Name:Angel Face
Strips Available:1
Latest Strip:Angel Face (1957)
Categories:Humor | Children/Teenagers | Leading Ladies

Between Shots and That Rookie From The 13th Squad

Thumbnail for Between Shots and That Rookie From The 13th SquadIn this section we have a two books by Percy Crosby, which predate his most notable creation the popular and critically acclaimed Skippy comic strip. Crosby enlisted in the Army during World War I, where he was wounded in battle and awarded both the Purple Heart and Victory medal. Somehow, despite the carnage of war, he managed to create these two humorous gems. They star the misadventures and thoughts of a very naive rookie name Private Dubb.

Writing in 1928 Thomas L. Masson said:
"These sketches had been made in no-man's land. Lying on the ground, with the detonations of battle all around him, while waiting to move, he had amused himself with these fancies. Human beings in action. They were terribly funny-crude, but what of that? I was afraid he would spoil them if he did them over within the mechanical atmosphere of a modern studio, or wherever he worked. And so they were reproduced - with some difficulty - just as he drew them."

Crosby would soon find fame and fortune with Skippy. But, his personal life suffered from alcoholism, expensive lawsuits against Skippy peanut butter (who used the name without Crosby's permission) and his political outbursts. In 1948, he was committed to a psychiatric unit and soon declared a paranoid schizophrenic. Percy Crosby died in an asylum on December 8, 1964. The real reasons for his incarceration are still disputed, but his artistic talent isn't!
Comic Strip Name:Between Shots and That Rookie From The 13th Squad
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Rookie From The 13th Squad
Categories:Humor | War/Armed Forces

Bobby Make Believe

Thumbnail for Bobby Make BelieveBobby Make-Believe began his short life in a Chicago Tribune Sunday page on January 31, 1915. It is obvious that the strip was highly influenced by Winsor McCay's Little Nemo in Slumberland which had already been running for 10 years. As the title suggests, Bobby is a bit of a dreamer of adventures, very much in the Walter Mitty mold.

The main historical significance of Bobby Make-Believe is that it was Frank King's first successful strip. It followed on the heels of a couple of misses in Tough Teddy and Here Comes Motorcycle Mike.

Frank King soon had his big hit when Gasoline Alley launched at the end of 1918. Bobby Make-Believe appears to have had his last daydream very soon afterwards. There is no definite end date so maybe he is still locked in his last fantasy adventure.
Comic Strip Name:Bobby Make Believe
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:Bobby Make Believe - Chicago Sunday Tribune (1915-1917)
Categories:Children/Teenagers | Fantasy/Whimsey | Humor
Publication History: Dates: 1915 - 1919

Boots And Her Buddies

Thumbnail for Boots And Her BuddiesBoots and Her Buddies was created by Edgar Martin and launched as a Newspaper Enterprise Association daily on Monday, February 18, 1924.

When we meet Boots (AKA "Sweetheart of the Comics", "Everybody's Sweetheart" or "Sweetheart of America") she is attending an undisclosed college, and the buddies of the title are various amorous beaus who vie for her attention.

It took quite a while before Edgar ("Abe") Martin allowed Boots to graduate, and over twenty years for her to eventually marry the successful suitor Rod Ruggles, with whom she has a son Davey Ruggles.

Although she never made it in the movies, Boots did manage a comic book run, and also appeared in "Boots and the Mystery of the Unlucky Vase", a war time book written and illustrated by Martin in 1943.

The daily strip would run until 1960. But Boots still continued in the Sunday Strip, that was launched 1926 and finally finished her run October 6, 1968.
Comic Strip Name:Boots And Her Buddies
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Boots And Her Buddies (more)
Categories:Humor | Leading Ladies

Bringing Up Father

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Comic Strip Name:Bringing Up Father
Strips Available:7
Latest Strip:Bringing Up Father (1921-1930)
Categories:Humor

Buster Brown

Thumbnail for Buster BrownBuster Brown is a comic strip character created in 1902 by Richard Felton Outcault which is known for his association with the Brown Shoe Company. This mischievous young boy was loosely based on a boy near Outcault's home in Flushing, New York. Buster Brown, his sister Mary Jane, and his dog Tige were well known to the American public in the early 20th century. Tige is thought to be the first talking pet to appear in American comics, and, like that of many of his successors, his speech goes unnoticed by adults.

The comic strip began in the New York Herald on May 4, 1902. Outcault left for William Randolph Hearst's employ in 1906, and after a court battle, Outcault continued his strip, now nameless, in Hearst papers, while the Herald continued their own version of Buster Brown with other artists. The latter lasted until 1911 or so, and the former until at least 1921.
Comic Strip Name:Buster Brown
Strips Available:5
Latest Strip:Buster Brown His Dog Tige and Their Troubles
Categories:Humor | Children/Teenagers
Publication History: Dates: 1902

Captain Easy

Thumbnail for Captain EasyCaptain Easy started his comic strip life on May 6, 1929 as sidekick in another one of our comic strips Wash Tubbs. Originally, little was known about Easy, apart from he was a tough Southerner who sought adventure.

The character proved popular, and June 11, 1933 he began starring in his own Sunday strip Captain Easy, Soldier of Fortune. Wash Tubbs and Captain Easy's creator Roy Crane drew the early strips. They are considered some of the finest examples of comic strip art.

As the years marched by Easy also became the star of the Wash Tubbs daily strip. During World War II he enlisted in the US army and after demobilization he became a private detective. Meanwhile Wash Tubbs married, and slipped away into domestic bliss.

Captain Easy's, comic strip life proved as durable as his chin and lasted over half a century until its demise in 1988.
Comic Strip Name:Captain Easy
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Captain Easy 1955.07.18-1955.09.19
Categories:Adventure | Crime

Charlie Chan

Thumbnail for Charlie ChanThe Chinese-American sleuth Charlie Chan was created by Earl Derr Biggers, and based in part on an actual Honolulu detective, Chang Apana. Although Chan, like his real-life counterpart Apana, works for the Honolulu police he is very much a globe-trotter who solves mysteries throughout the world.

Charlie Chan debuted in The House Without A Key written by Biggers in 1925, with other novels following in quick succession. Only one year after he appeared in print Charlie Chan hit the big screen and over the years has appeared in numerous other film adaptations, along with radio and television shows.

On October 24, 1938 the McNaught Syndicate launched a Charlie Chan comic strip. It is notable as the first strip drawn by Alfred Andriola. He would later work on Dann Dunn, before embarking on the strip for which he is best known for today, the long running Kerry Drake. Charlie Chan's strip was cancelled in May 1942, following the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

The ending of hostilities meant the Charlie Chan made a comeback. Although his strip was not resurrected, he appeared in a variety of comic books including a four issue run by Charlton and in a title created for Prize Comics by Joe Simon and Jack Kirby.
Comic Strip Name:Charlie Chan
Strips Available:14
Latest Strip:Charlie Chan Daily Newspaper Strips 1939-05-22 To 1939-12-23
Categories:Crime | Detective

Chris Welkin

Thumbnail for Chris WelkinChris Welkin, Planeteer was distributed by the Newspaper Enterprise Association
from 1952 to 1964. It was created by Art Sansom and Russ Winterbotham. As Sansom recollects:

"I inherited a weekly strip called Peggy and then about 1950, NEA decided cowboys were on their way out and spacemen were the coming thing. So I began to draw the Chris Welkin strip, which was daily and Sunday for a couple of years, and then Sunday only for about eight years after that."

The best was yet to come from Art Sansom, when his The Born Loser debuted on May 10, 1965. The strip and its main character Brutus P. Thornapple became so popular that it was soon syndicated to over 1,000 newspapers. So, despite all his planet hopping technology Chris Welkin eventually lost out to a loser.
Comic Strip Name:Chris Welkin
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:Chris Welkin 1952
Categories:Science Fiction
Publication History: Dates: 1952 - 1964

Comic Strip ads

Thumbnail for Comic Strip adsMany years ago advertisers realized that the comic strip was a great vehicle to promote their products. During the 1950's it was a favorite medium for cigarette manufacturers and R J Reynolds were at the forefront. Their Camel brand already sponsored the Phil Silvers Show. Ernie Bilko and the rest of the cast were ideal material for a comic strip drawn by Bob Bugg. Others featured in the Camel strips include:
  • Hollywood great Henry Fonda
  • Exporers Lewis N. Cotlow and Nichol Smith
  • War Workers Jean Curran, Fieda Traynor and a WAVE named Phyllis
  • Marguerite Piazza soprano, entertainer and later a philanthropist
  • Johnnie Parsons winner of the Indianapolis 500 in 1950
  • Ruth Kyle MacDonnell who featured on the cover of Time magazine
Captain Ben Dix was sponsored by The Bendix Aviation Corporation. The World War II strip has a "I know my Instruments" panel featuring strange and wonderful appliances, to cut on the dotted line and save!
Philip Morris contribute to this section with Duke Handy. The strip that only lasted 6 months during 1958 was written by Allen Saunders and illustrated by Alex Kotzky. Fists and cigarettes abound in this series!!
Comic Strip Name:Comic Strip ads
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Camel Cigs
Categories:Mixed Bag

Corky

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Comic Strip Name:Corky
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:Corky 1938
Categories:Children/Teenagers | Humor

Dan Dunn

Thumbnail for Dan DunnDan Dunn is credited as the first fictional character to make a debut in an American comic magazine. Quite a claim to fame! He was created by Norman Marsh, and debuted in Detective Dan, Secret Operative No. 48, in 1933. Humor Publications cancelled the title after just the one issue (the company would only produce a total of three comic before folding). But all was not lost as the same year Publishers Syndicate launched Dan Dunn's comic strip.

It is quite apparent that Dan Dunn is a Dick Tracy clone. He has the same square-jaw and when it comes to taking on criminals, he has the same propensity to violence. Comparisons have also been made between his partner Irwin Higgs and Dick Tracy's Pat Patton. Showing his softer side Dunn is friendly with an orphaned girl named Babs and owns a dog he called Wolf.

Dan Dunn also appeared in 7 Big Little Books and two issue pulp magazines. Although he never made it onto the silver screen, Dan did appear in 78 episodes of a 15-minute radio program. The final Dan Dunn strip appeared Sunday, October 3, 1943, as he headed off to war. He still appears to be missing in action.
Comic Strip Name:Dan Dunn
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Dan Dunn 1938
Categories:Crime
Publication History: Dates: Sep 1933 - Oct 1943

Danny Dreamer

Thumbnail for Danny DreamerThe artist behind Danny Dreamer was a man named Clare Briggs, and to add further confusion his daughter was also named Clare.

Brigg's was a prolific creator of strips. His first hit was with 'A. Piker Clerk', which debuted in 1904. His later comic strips included: 'When a Feller Needs a Friend', 'Ain't It a Grand and Glorious Feeling?' and 'The Days of Real Sport'.

When Briggs died in 1930 Franklin P. Adams wrote:

"I feel acutely the loss of a cartoonist whose work I have enjoyed hugely for 30 years. I enjoyed it so much that I got him to leave Chicago so that his work could appear in the New York Tribune with mine. It helped the paper so much that Clare stayed there for 15 years, seven years longer than I did. To my notion, he drew no dud cartoons. I never knew anyone who so enjoyed working. Often while drawing a cartoon I have seen him laugh uproariously at it. He was a sweet and merry boy, if a rotten poker player, and the public, poorer for his leaving it, is a big winner in having him at all."
Comic Strip Name:Danny Dreamer
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Danny Dreamer 1908
Categories:Children/Teenagers | Humor | Fantasy/Whimsey

Dixie Dugan

Thumbnail for Dixie DuganDixie Dugan was created by J.P. McEvoy. She debuted as the star of Show Girl, a slightly risque novel that was serialized in Liberty magazine in 1928. This soon appeared in book form, along with a Broadway show, that was produced by Ziegfeld. George and Ira Gershwin provided the music and it was immediately made into a movie. All this occurred in 1928, Dixie had hit the road running!

In October 1929 Dixie Dugan appeared in her own comic strip, drawn by John H. Streibel. A few years later in 1934 she was also given a Sunday page. Initially the stories were full of humor and showbiz glamor, but as the Great Depression bit, the daily strip became more serious, with Dixie working to support herself and her parents. It also featured romance and suspense stories. In comparison the Sunday page remained lighter in tone.

Towards the end McEvoy's son Renny was charged with writing of the strip. Streibel remained as the artist, but as his health deteriorated much of the work was done assistants. Streibel died in 1962 and the strip struggled on until 1966.
Comic Strip Name:Dixie Dugan
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Dixie Dugan Various
Categories:Leading Ladies | Mixed Bag
Publication History: Dates: 1928 - 1966

Don Dixon and the Hidden Empire

Thumbnail for Don Dixon and the Hidden EmpireDon Dixon and the Hidden Empire launched as a Sunday page on October 6, 1935. It was syndicated by The Daily Eagle, a small newspaper located in Brooklyn. The series was written by Bob Moore, with Carl Pfeufer providing the artwork.

The story starts with a young Don and a Doctor Lugoff exploring new lands. In their adventures they discover the lost world of Pharia. Don soon finds love interest in the beautiful Princess Wanda and the stage is now set for some ripping yarns.

It is quite noticeable that Don Dixon bears more than a passing resemblance to Flash Gordon. In fact the main difference appears to be whilst Flash is exploring the universe, Don Dixon is most definitely Earth bound.

Don's five and half year comics strip run ended on March 6, 1941, but no doubt there have been many untold adventures since that date.
Comic Strip Name:Don Dixon and the Hidden Empire
Strips Available:7
Latest Strip:Don Dixon 1939
Categories:Science Fiction
Publication History: Dates: 1935 - 1941

Ella Cinders

Thumbnail for Ella CindersThe name Ella Cinders gives a big clue to the initial inspiration for this comic strip. The modern day Cinderalla, created by writer Bill Conselman and artist Charles Plumb, first made her appearance June 1, 1925. A Sunday page was launched a couple of years later and Ella's run finally finished in 1961.

The story started in classic style with a stepmother Myrtle "Ma" Cinders, favoring her daughters Prissie and Lotta, whilst Ella is consigned to household chores. But, Ella is made of sterner stuff and along with her brother Blackie makes light of her lot and even has a boyfriend Waite Lifter.

After winning a rather dubious prize, Ella Cinders moves to Hollywood, with her brother, to start a glamorous job that never materializes. Now free from drudgery her adventures really begin. As a final note, Ella Cinders actually did have a break, starring in a real movie released in 1926.
Comic Strip Name:Ella Cinders
Strips Available:10
Latest Strip:Ella Cinders
Categories:Humor | Leading Ladies
Publication History: Dates: 1925 - 1961

Flyin' Jenny

Thumbnail for Flyin' JennyFlyin' Jenny created by Russell Keaton, made her maiden flight October 1939. Virginia Dare, to give her correct name was a test pilot at the Starcraft Aviation Factory. Appearing at the beginning of World War II Flyin' Jenny would not last long after the end of hostilities, the strip was discontinued July 1946.

During her seven years of life Jenny was not content with just taking to the skies, but did battle with master criminals, spies, saboteurs and numerous other evil-doers.

Although originally Russell Keaton both wrote and drew the strip, over time others would become involved including: Glenn Chaffin (co-creator of Tailspin Tommy), Marc Swayze (now known for his work on Mary Marvel) and Gladys Parker (Mopsy). Keaton died February 13, 1945 aged just 35, and just over a year later Flyin' Jenny made her last flight.
Comic Strip Name:Flyin' Jenny
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Flyin' Jenny 1941 0615-1228
Categories:Adventure | Leading Ladies | Aviation
Publication History: Dates: 1939 - 1946

Frantic Stein

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Comic Strip Name:Frantic Stein
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Frantic Stein 02
Categories:Adventure

Gasoline Alley

Thumbnail for Gasoline AlleyGasoline Alley made a low-key debut in The Chicago Tribune Syndicate, November 24, 1918. It was the beginning of a journey, which continues to this day.

Gasoline Alley is credited as the first comic strip in which the characters age normally, and also being one of the first soap operas in any medium.

The strip was created by Frank King with the remit from The Chicago Tribune's publisher, Colonel Robert McCormick, to create a strip to appeal to the new generation of car owners and mechanics. The major characters include:
  • Walt Wallet - a car fanatic, head of the family and the strip's central character
  • Phyllis Wallet - married Walt June 24, 1926 and died April 26, 2004
  • Skeezix Wallet - Walt's adopted son, found on his doorstep February 14, 1921
  • Avery - Walt's rather cantankerous neighbor
  • Pert - a rich miser and often the villain of the piece

Comic Strip Name:Gasoline Alley
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Gasoline Alley 1921 (no 6-19)
Categories:Automobiles | Humor
Publication History: Dates: 1918

Invisible Scarlet O'Neil

Thumbnail for Invisible Scarlet O'NeilInvisible Scarlet O'Neil was written and drawn by Russell Stamm, who had previously worked on Dick Tracy. She first appeared in the pages of the Chicago Times, June 3, 1940. Scarlet O'Neil has the claim to fame of being one of the very first superheroines.

As her name suggests Scarlet has the power of invisibility. This power was created when Scarlet
put her finger in an experimental ray created by her scientist father. She suddenly disappeared, but luckily figured out that touching a nerve in her wrist acted as a switch, so she could turn her invisibility off and on at will.

Over time Scarlet O'Neil's special talent was slowly dropped from the strip until in 1950 it was renamed to just 'Scarlet O'Neil'. A year later a new character named Stainless Steel was introduced. In 1955 the strip was retitled Stainless Steel, promptly folding the next year. As for Scarlet O'Neil she has yet to switch her off her invisibility and no one knows where she is.
Comic Strip Name:Invisible Scarlet O'Neil
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Invisible Scarlet O'Neil 1944-5
Categories:Superhero | Leading Ladies
Publication History: Dates: 1940 - 1956

Joe Palooka

Thumbnail for Joe PalookaIn 1921 Ham Fisher, a young sports reporter, met a boxer named Pete Latzo outside a poolroom. As he later recalled:

"Here, made to order, was the comic strip character I had been looking for - a big, good-natured prize fighter who didn't like to fight; a defender of little guys; a gentle knight. I ran back to the office, drew a set of strips and rushed to the newspaper syndicates."

Despite his continued efforts, Fisher had to wait nearly ten years before the strip launched. His breakthrough finally came whilst working as a salesman for the McNaught Syndicate hawking the newly launched Dixie Dugan. He managed to sign up over 20 newspapers for his strip, and Charles V. Adams McNaught's general manager agreed to give Joe Palooka trial.

Launching April, 1930 Joe Palooka soon proved to be a sporting success. In 1932 he was the star of a short-lived radio show and in 1934 he starred in a low-budget movie. This was followed by a series of shorts and later a television series. He also appeared in numerous comic books along with his compatriots Little Max and Humphrey Pennyworth.

Ham Fisher, Palooka's creator, committed suicide in December, 1955. Joe however lived on much longer, his final newspaper strip appeared on November 24, 1984.
Comic Strip Name:Joe Palooka
Strips Available:19
Latest Strip:Joe Palooka 1944
Categories:Boxing/Martial Arts | Humor | Sports
Publication History: Dates: 1930 - 1984

Ken Winston

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Comic Strip Name:Ken Winston
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Ken Winston 1954-11-02 to 1955-01-08
Categories:Crime | Detective

Krazy Kat

Thumbnail for Krazy KatThe Krazy Kat comic strip debuted in New York Evening Journal October 13, 1913. Created by George Herriman it was published in daily papers until 1944. An interesting fact is that the publisher William Randolph Hearst was a great fan of Krazy Kat, and on occasions insisted that it appeared in his newspapers.

Today, the often surreal strip is highly regarded and often quoted as a source of artistic inspiration. The main characters are:
  • Krazy Kat - a mentally challenged cat who is head over heels in love with a mouse and misinterprets brick throwing as a sign of endearment
  • Ignatz Mouse - the object of the cat's desire who unfortunately hates Krazy Kat, and makes that plain to everyone bar the cat
  • Offissa Pupp - whose sole objective is to lock up Ignatz Mouse in the county jail
Comic Strip Name:Krazy Kat
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Krazy Kat 1916
Categories:Humor | Funny Animals
Publication History: Dates: 1910 - 1944

Lesley Shane

Thumbnail for Lesley ShaneGlamourous detective, Lesley Shane, appeared in the Daily Sketch in the 1950's. The stories were syndicated world wide and later were adapted for Super Detective Library, one of the many pocket library series that were very popular in Britain and elsewhere.

The newspaper strips were drawn by Oliver Passingham.

These strips appear by kind permission of http://bearalley.blogspot.co.uk/
Comic Strip Name:Lesley Shane
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Lesley Shane - Arms of Dracos
Categories:Crime | Adventure | Leading Ladies

Little Nemo

Thumbnail for Little NemoLittle Nemo is the main fictional character in a series of weekly comic strips by Winsor McCay (1871-1934) that appeared in the New York Herald and William Randolph Hearst's New York American newspapers from October 15, 1905-April 23, 1911 and April 30, 1911-1913; respectively.

The strip was first called "Little Nemo in Slumberland" and then "In the Land of Wonderful Dreams" when it changed papers.

A brief revival of the title occurred from 1924-27.
Comic Strip Name:Little Nemo
Strips Available:16
Latest Strip:Little Nemo 1913 And 1914
Categories:Humor | Children/Teenagers | Fantasy/Whimsey
Publication History: Dates: 1905

Minute Movies

Thumbnail for Minute MoviesCreated by cartoonist Ed Wheelan, Minute Movies had a lengthy run from 1920-1935. It was a followup to his earlier Midget Movies (1918-1920). He later revived the strip as a back-up feature in All-American's (later DC) Flash Comics where it ran for several years (1940-1944).
Comic Strip Name:Minute Movies
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:Minute Movies 1930.02.17-1930.03.29
Categories:Humor | Adventure

Myra North

Thumbnail for Myra NorthMyra North, Special Nurse was written by Ray Thompson and drawn by Charles Coll. The strip, which was distributed by the Newspaper Enterprise Association, debuted on February 10, 1936. A Sunday page was then added December 6, 1936. Thompson and Coll continued to work on both strips until they folded a few years later.

One thing to be aware of, is that Myra North is not quite the person you would imagine. Although she is indeed a nurse, Myra spends a large proportion of her time investigating spies, super-criminals and other miscreants. So the strip is most definitely not a medical soap opera.

In 1938 Myra appeared in a Big Little Book, but that was about her only outing away from her newspaper strips. The daily ended on March 25, 1939, but she continued to make regular appearances on Sundays until August 31, 1941. And that was the end of Myra North!
Comic Strip Name:Myra North
Strips Available:2
Latest Strip:Myra North 1936
Categories:Adventure | Crime | Spy/Espionage | Leading Ladies
Publication History: Dates: Feb 1936 - Aug 1941

Oaky Doaks

Thumbnail for Oaky DoaksOaky Doaks was created by Bill McCleery the comics editor of The Associated Press and illustrated by cartoonist Ralph Fuller. The strip debuted June 17, 1935 and a Sunday edition was added later in 1941.

The strip, set in medieval times centers on Oaky Doaks, a farm boy who wore a suit of armor that he had made from the tin roof of a shed. His steed is named Nellie, and before joining Oaky on his adventures, pulled his father's plow.

Oaky Doaks has the usual knightly adventures, fighting dragons and rescuing damsels in distress. But as he is just a simple lad much mayhem ensues. In the early years Oaky Doaks was accompanied by the rather rotund King Cedric, who really was not suited for kingly duties.

Later Oaky strikes out on his own and settles in Uncertainia. Here he marries King Corny's beautiful daughter, Princess Pomona, who bears him a son. Presumably he is still there, as that is the last we heard of him, back in 1961.
Comic Strip Name:Oaky Doaks
Strips Available:5
Latest Strip:Oaky Doaks 1939
Categories:Humor | Fantasy/Whimsey
Publication History: Dates: Jun 1935 - 1961

Old Opie Dilldock

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Comic Strip Name:Old Opie Dilldock
Strips Available:3
Latest Strip:Old Opie Dilldock - Chicago Tribune (1908)
Categories:Humor | Fantasy/Whimsey

Out Our Way

Thumbnail for Out Our WayOut Our Way first saw the light of day as a single-panel cartoon March 20, 1922. Created by J.R. Williams it depicted American rural and small town life. The strip acted as an umbrella for several series, which included 'The Bull Of The Woods', 'Why Mothers Get Gray' and 'Heroes Are Made, Not Born'.

Another recurring title was 'Worry Wart' that starred a young boy. Other regular characters included a cowboy named Curly and Wes a ranch bookkeeper. When a Sunday page was launched some of the characters were grouped together as the Willet family. At its height Out Our Way appeared in more than 700 newspapers, with a readership in the millions.

J. R. Williams died in 1957, but Out Our Way continued to be produced by among others: Neg Cochran, Paul Gringle and Ed Sullivan. The last strip was produced in 1977, twenty years after Williams' death and fifty-five years since it launched.
Comic Strip Name:Out Our Way
Strips Available:22
Latest Strip:Out Our Way 1927 Dailies
Categories:Humor
Publication History: Dates: Mar 1922 - 1977

Private Lives

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Comic Strip Name:Private Lives
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:Private Lives pt.4
Categories:Non-fiction
Publication History: Dates: 1938 - 1948

Sparky Watts

Thumbnail for Sparky WattsSparky Watts is a light-hearted comic strip that was written and drawn by Boody Rogers. It is a parody of the highly popular superheroes of the day. The story starts with Sparky Watts making his way though college by selling magazines door-to-door. One day he knocks on at the house of Doctor Static and a deal is struck. The doctor will buy all of the magazines if Sparky is the guinea pig for his cosmic ray experiments.

In traditional style he is now suddenly blessed with superhuman powers, becoming the world's strongest man. Apart from his incredible speed and strength, his head is so strong that artillery shells bounce off it. On a domestic level Sparky now needs to use a blowtorch to shave! The stories which often center around Doc Sparks's latest experiment include other regular characters:
  • Slap Happy - a bald-headed sidekick who provides muscle and has massive feet
  • Yoo Hoo - a small Chinese boy
  • Hattie - who appears to be nothing more than a top-hat and legs
  • Goober - a dog who is owned by Doctor Static
Comic Strip Name:Sparky Watts
Strips Available:1
Latest Strip:Sparky Watts
Categories:Superhero | Humor | Children/Teenagers
Publication History: Dates: Apr 1940

Terry and The Pirates

Thumbnail for Terry and The PiratesA classic adventure comic strip, Milton Caniff's Terry and the Pirates.

Caniff's masterful work on Terry garnered him the very first Cartoonist of the Year award in 1946 as well as the nickname "the Rembrandt of the comic strip."

What we have here are the earliest Terry strips, illustrating Caniff's knack for spirited storytelling - complete with exotic locales, fisticuffs, explosions, and more than a little danger and suspense. So Join Terry Lee, Pat Ryan, Dale Scott and George Webster Confucius aka "Connie" as they embark on the adventure of a lifetime.

PLEASE NOTE: We also have a collection of Terry And The Pirates Comic Books.
Comic Strip Name:Terry and The Pirates
Strips Available:58
Latest Strip:Terry and the Pirates 14 C a) Burma's Return Beowulf
Categories:Adventure | Children/Teenagers | Pirates
Publication History: Dates: 1934

The Thimble Theater

Thumbnail for The Thimble TheaterThe Thimble Theatre created by cartoonist Elzie Segar debuted on December 19, 1919. The King Features strip was designed as a replacement for Ed Wheelan's Midget Movies (he had moved on to create Minute Movies). The original strip parodied popular movies and plays of the time.

The two central characters were Castor Oyl and his pal, Ham Gravy. In case you have not guessed what is coming Castor had a sister named Olive. All three appeared together for nearly 10 years until on January 17, 1929 a new and now very familiar character made his first appearance. Castor Oyl and Ham Gravy were down at the docks and as Don Markstein tells us:

"'Hey there! Are you a sailor?' Castor called to a one-eyed man wearing a nautical outfit, with an anchor tattooed on his arm.

'Ja think I'm a cowboy?' said Popeye, who at that moment became an integral part of the Thimble Theatre cast. Within a year, Ham was written out of the strip and Popeye replaced him as the sweetheart of Castor's sister, Olive. Wimpy was added to the cast in 1932, and Swee'pea in 1936."

And rest is history :)
Comic Strip Name:The Thimble Theater
Strips Available:1
Latest Strip:Thimble Theatre 1919
Categories:Humor
Publication History: Dates: 1919

Vignettes of Life

Thumbnail for Vignettes of Life
Comic Strip Name:Vignettes of Life
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:Vignettes of Life - Frank Godwin 1927
Categories:Humor

War On Crime

Thumbnail for War On CrimeWar on Crime was conceived, at least in part, by none other than FBI director Edgar J. Hoover, who intended it as a public relations exercise. It was designed to counteract the current portrayals of G-men as lone mavericks. Instead, the strip showed the FBI as a formidable and well-oiled organization that was under the direct control of the director.

The strip launched on May 18, 1936 appearing in 45 newspapers. It was written by crime reporter Rex Collier, who was a personal friend of Hoover. The illustrations were initially provided by Kemp Sterrett who after a year was replaced by Jimmy Thompson.

All the stories featured in the War on Crime were real-life cases, and personally vetted by Hoover. The strip chronicled the demise of such infamous characters as: Ma Barker, Baby Face Nelson and John Dillinger. They all met their ends due to the expertise and scientific methodology used throughout the FBI. Well, that is the way War on Crime told the stories!

The strip finished its run on January 22, 1938. This was partly due to the fact that real-life material was running thin. The other reason cited is that the general public much preferred their crime-busters to be daredevil heroes who cut through red-tape. This fact still holds good!
Comic Strip Name:War On Crime
Strips Available:10
Latest Strip:War on Crime C1-78 Dillinger Aug 17 to Nov 14 1936
Categories:Crime
Publication History: Dates: May 1936 - Jan 1938

Wash Tubbs

Thumbnail for Wash TubbsThe date is April 14, 1924 and Washington Tubbs II, a young bumbling store manager makes his comic strip debut. It started life as a daily gag about Tubbs's misadventures, but soon expanded to storylines. Just 12 weeks later the strip was reinvented. Its creator, Roy Crane, moved Tubbs from the comfort of the store to a life in the circus.

Suddenly, Tubbs became a man of adventure and it is often claimed that the former store manager was the precursor to Buck Rogers and Dick Tracy. Bull Dawson, Wash's arch-enemy was introduced in 1926. But Tubbs not being a fighter needed some muscle to deal with him. After a few attempts at finding a suitable character Roy Crane introduced Captain Easy on May 6, 1929. The tough Southerner was exactly what was needed. In fact he eventually stole the show, had himself a Sunday strip and in 1949 the daily was renamed Captain Easy. Luckily we have examples in our Captain Easy section.

Tubbs made infrequent visits to the strip, presumably married life and the birth of twins keeping him busy. In 1988 Captain Easy's strip finished and with it any chance of news of Tubbs.
Comic Strip Name:Wash Tubbs
Strips Available:9
Latest Strip:Wash Tubbs 19440904-19441208
Categories:Adventure | Humor
Publication History: Dates: 1924

Yellow Kid

Thumbnail for Yellow KidThe Yellow Kid was created and drawn by Richard F. Outcault. Real name Mickey Dugan, he was bald headed and was probably shaven after lice were found.

He sported a large yellow hand-me-down nightshirt, hence the name. As a device, the shirt had what the kid was saying printed on it.

The Yellow Kid made his appearance as a supporting character in Truth Magazine in 1894. Due to his popularity he then became the star of Hogan's Alley (a fictional slum area in New York City). This first appeared in the New York World published by Joseph Pulitzer in 1895.

Soon color was introduced, leading the way to Hogan's Alley and its star the Yellow Kid becoming a full-page Sunday color cartoon.
Comic Strip Name:Yellow Kid
Strips Available:4
Latest Strip:The Yellow Kid (1895)
Categories:Humor | Children/Teenagers
Publication History: Dates: 1895

Single And Small Run

Thumbnail for Single And Small RunNewspaper strips that were a small run, or that we only have a single collection of and are not expecting any more.
Comic Strip Name:Single And Small Run
Strips Available:71
Latest Strip:Petey 1927
Categories:Mixed Bag
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