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Vocapedia > Media > Newspapers > Comic strips





Jim Davis


May 05, 2024




















During 31 years of newspaper comic strips,

Dondi never grew up.


Photograph: Julie Glassberg

for The New York Times


Irwin Hasen,

Comic Book Artist and ‘Dondi’ Illustrator,

Dies at 96


MARCH 15, 2015



















 Irwin Hasen,

who drew and helped to create “Dondi,”

at his Manhattan apartment in 2011.


Photograph: Julie Glassberg

for The New York Times


Irwin Hasen,

Comic Book Artist and ‘Dondi’ Illustrator,

Dies at 96


MARCH 15, 2015



















Ian Williams


The great NHS efficiency drive – cartoon

GP and graphic novelist Ian Williams

on why ‘managing with what we’ve got’

might not be the best mantra

for an effective health service


Monday 15 June 2015    17.38 BST
















The Cartoon Museum


British cartoon & comic art

from the 18th century to the present day










Go Comics        USA










comics / strips / funnies / comic book art / graphic novels > UK / US










The Guardian > Sick notes        UK

Ian Williams's weekly comic strip on the state of the NHS










comic-strip character > Ziggy        USA


















Irwin Hasen    USA    1918-2015


cartoonist and comic-book artist

who drew, and helped create, “Dondi,”

the widely syndicated comic strip

about a lovable, wide-eyed

World War II orphan










Thomas Albert Wilson    USA    1931-2011


Who is this comic-strip character

named Ziggy?


He can’t be placed

in time, location or economic status,

and seems to be — but may not be —

an adult male.


It is known that he was created in 1969

by the cartoonist Tom Wilson










Stuart Ertz Hample    USA    1926-2010



who entertained children (and adults)

as an author, playwright, adman,

performer and cartoonist




From 1976 to 1984

he wrote and illustrated

the syndicated comic strip

“Inside Woody Allen,”

a series of panels

that purported to reveal

the mind of that famous comedian

and film director










Peter O’Donnell    USA    1920-2010


creator of Modesty Blaise


"Modesty Blaise,”

as the comic strip was known,

was published

in The London Evening Standard

for nearly 40 years,

from 1963 to 2001

— more than 10,000 strips in all —

and syndicated in newspapers

all over the world.












Corpus of news articles


Media > Journalism > Comic strips




Bil Keane,

Creator of ‘The Family Circus,’

Dies at 89


November 9, 2011
The New York Times


In the single-panel cartoon that Bil Keane drew for publication on Sept. 10, 1964, the mother is looking at the shopping list posted on the kitchen wall. In her handwriting are the words: “Cereal, tea, soap.” Following on the list, in sloppy kid’s scrawl: “Ice cream, cookies, plastic soldiers” — with all the S’s reversed.

In the cartoon published on Jan. 22, 2008, the mother — not looking much older — is at the stove, in the background, as one of her sons tells his sister, “Mommy’s cooking my favorite dinner. It’s called ‘leftovers.’ ”

Daily, for more than half a century, millions of readers have received a serving of Bil (he really did spell it with one “L”) Keane’s traditional-value, homespun humor in his cartoon “The Family Circus,” published in recent years in nearly 1,500 newspapers.

Mr. Keane died at 89 on Tuesday at his home in Paradise Valley, Ariz., but the tradition will continue, said his son Jeff, who has been working with his father on the cartoon since 1981.

No doubt they will bear the same gentle touch as the Oct. 23, 1965, cartoon in which three of the children — Billy, Dolly and Jeffy — are in the back of the station wagon as it passes a drive-in movie theater where a western is on the screen. “Wow!” Billy says. “I wish we lived in one of the houses along here.”

Knee-slapping guffaws were not the stuff of Mr. Keane. “We are, in the comics, the last frontier of good, wholesome family humor and entertainment,” he told The Associated Press in 1995. “On radio and television, magazines and the movies, you can’t tell what you’re going to get. When you look at the comic page, you can usually depend on something acceptable by the entire family.”

Particularly acceptable to Mr. Keane, said Andrew Farago, curator of the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, were mispronunciations and word twists: “A kid would say ‘pizgetti’ instead of spaghetti, and Jeffy would say, ‘Can I wear my short-sleeve pants?’ ”

“The Family Circus,” said Tom Richmond, president of the National Cartoonists Society, “was one of the strips that I, as a kid, never missed, because it was Americana on the comic page.”

One of the characters that delighted Mr. Richmond, he said, was Not Me, “this invisible person who was always the one who did the naughty thing and ended up getting blamed for it by the kids.”

William Aloysius Keane showed an early interest in cartooning. He was born in Philadelphia on Oct. 5, 1922 to Aloysius and Florence Keane. As a child, he drew on his bedroom walls.

“I didn’t always spell my name Bil,” he told Editor & Publisher magazine in 1968. “My parents named me Bill, but when I started drawing cartoons on the wall, they knocked the ‘L’ out of me.”

After graduating from high school, where he drew cartoons for the student magazine, Mr. Keane served in the Army during World War II. Assigned as a cartoonist for the military newspaper Stars and Stripes, he was based in Australia, where he met his future wife, Thelma Carne.

Mrs. Keane died in 2008. Besides his son Jeff, Mr. Keane is survived by three other sons, Neal, Glen and Christopher; a daughter, Gayle Keane; nine grandchildren; and one great-granddaughter.

After the war, Mr. Keane became a staff artist for The Philadelphia Bulletin. After the family moved to Arizona in 1959, Mr. Keane started drawing “The Family Circus,” based on his own family’s experiences.

“Everything that’s happened in the strip has happened to me,” he once said. “That’s why I have all this white hair.”

Bil Keane, Creator of ‘The Family Circus,’ Dies at 89,






Beetle Bailey's Long March:

Classic Cartoons Search for a Home

Strip's Creator, 84, Had Comics Collection
Worth $20 Million, and No Place to Show It


July 16, 2008
The WAll Street Journal
Page A1


Mort Walker has drawn "Beetle Bailey," a comic strip chronicling the lighter side of Army life, for 58 years. During most of that time, the artist has been waging a war of his own -- to preserve cartoons.

Over the years, comics have become hot. They're the subject of movies, TV shows and Pulitzer Prize-winning literature like "Maus" by Art Spiegelman. But when nobody took comic books seriously, Mr. Walker saw them as art.

In his quest, Mr. Walker, 84 years old, has amassed more than 200,000 pieces -- including comic books, news clippings, drawings, film footage and posters. Mr. Walker, who published his first cartoon at age 11, contributed thousands of pieces from his own collection. He got contributions from comic-book heavyweights like "Spider-Man" creator Stan Lee and the late cartoonist Rube Goldberg, who died in 1970. The trove contains Mickey and Minnie Mouse drawings by Walt Disney and hand-drawn panels of "Peanuts" by Charles Schulz. It is one of the largest collections of original cartoon art in the world.

It also has been searching for a home. Worth an estimated $20 million according to the museum's curators, the collection was moved to a storage facility in Stamford, Conn., in 2002. Mr. Walker and his family have looked at dozens of homes for the collection ever since.

"We thought people would welcome us with open arms," Mr. Walker says. "But it was really hard to convince people that cartoon art was worth saving and worth looking at."

In 1974, Mr. Walker opened the National Cartoon Museum in Greenwich, Conn., to house his collection. He moved the museum a couple of times, plagued by everything from money problems to collapsing roofs. He eventually closed it in 2002.

"It's always been Mort right out there in front," says Jim Davis, author of the comic strip "Garfield." "Fighting for the cartoons and fighting for cartooning as a legitimate art form. He's been tireless."

Mr. Walker's quest to preserve comics began in the 1940s when he was a young artist. He would regularly walk into the New York offices of King Features Syndicate -- which in 1950 became the distributor for "Beetle Bailey" -- and see crumpled up "Krazy Kat" cartoons on the ground. They were used to absorb water from ceiling leaks, he says.

"It just wasn't right," Mr. Walker says. He began taking the drawings home.

For two decades he looked for a home for a national museum. He says he talked to Yale University, the Museum of the City of New York and the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., among others. Nobody was interested, he says.

Then, in 1973, Mr. Walker talked up his idea to the Hearst Foundation. The foundation wrote him a check for $50,000, and the National Cartoon Museum opened in a mansion in Greenwich, Conn.

Out on the Street

After a couple of years, the landlord decided he could rent out the space for more, and the museum was back out on the street, Mr. Walker says. In 1976, he moved the collection to Rye Brook, N.Y., where he bought a ramshackle 17-room home for $60,000.

"There was ice on the dining room floor, you could skate on it," Mr. Walker says. "It was a mess."

Pigeons had taken residence in the house. Plastic ceiling moldings littered the floor, and windows were shattered. Mr. Walker hired his son Brian and friends to repair the place. Later that year, the museum was up and running. It attracted as many as 75,000 visitors a year in its heyday.

Keeping the museum running became a Walker family affair. Mort Walker's wife, Cathy, managed the museum free for decades. Brian Walker curated exhibits and organized events. Another son, Greg, would stay up till 2 a.m. typesetting captions for exhibits on the walls.

One afternoon in 1992, while doing paperwork, Mrs. Walker heard a strange noise. Decorative ridges atop the building's tower had fallen off. At the same time, the collection was beginning to outgrow the building. It was time to look for another home.

Donations of art flooded in from cartoonists and their estates. Magazine and comic syndicates would clear out storerooms and give cartoons to Mr. Walker. The collection swelled with "Dick Tracy" strips, boxes of Marvel comics and "Yellow Kid" originals.

In 1996, Mr. Walker moved the collection to Boca Raton, Fla. He drew up plans for a majestic new space. Giant cartoon characters were painted on the walls of a temporary trailer placed on the land where the museum would eventually stand. When construction wrapped up, Mrs. Walker was first to set foot in the new museum. When she walked in, she cried.

But two corporate sponsors filed for bankruptcy. The museum lost $5 million in expected donations and was unable to afford basic maintenance costs, Mr. Walker says. The bank foreclosed, he says, and the museum closed in 2002.


Move to Stamford

The collection was packed up and moved to the Stamford storage facility.

Mr. Walker says he has lent out cartoons for specific exhibitions, but no museums would take on exhibiting the whole collection.

Donations paid for storage and preservation of the cartoon art, which is kept in a dark, humidity-controlled space. Certain pieces are handled with white gloves. Comics are rotated for exhibition to prevent from too much light exposure.

To pay off some museum debt, Mr. Walker auctioned off some cartoons: Most notably, a Mickey Mouse drawing fetched $700,000 at a New York auction in 2001. He has avoided selling any other major pieces of the museum collection, but does auction some of his "Beetle Bailey" strips for charities.

In 2006, the museum nearly had a deal to relocate in the Empire State Building in New York City. Press releases were issued and stationery was printed. But the plan fell apart. Photos and a tall model of the Empire State Building still sit in the living room of the Walkers' home in Connecticut.

In 2007, Ohio State University Prof. Lucy Caswell, a former member of the cartoon museum's board of directors, began to talk with the Walkers about merging their collection with the university's own cartoon collection. The university promised the art would be available for all to see, and the Walkers finally decided that was the way to go. The art arrived in Ohio last month.

Ohio State will revamp a space that's currently being used as a library and will catalog all of the cartoons. It is accepting the collection as a donation, and Mr. Walker reserves the right to borrow pieces back for special exhibitions.

For the past four months, the Walker family has been sifting through the collection and reminiscing. "It's almost painful going over all that stuff again," Mr. Walker says.

On a recent day, he picked up a large cutout of Hagar from "Hagar the Horrible" and talked about how creator Dik Browne officiated at the wedding ceremony of son Brian.

"It's like watching your parents pack up their house," Brian Walker says.

Beetle Bailey's Long March:
Classic Cartoons Search for a Home,










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