May 5 – National Cartoonist Day

Happy Cartoonist Day!

imagesDoes anyone recognize this cartoon? I didn’t. This is actually the first cartoon character to be printed in the New York World on Sunday, May 5, 1895.  His name is ‘The Yellow Kid’ and he was created by Richard Outcault. Outcault went to school at the McMicken University’s School of Design in Cincinnati for three years starting when he was only 15 years old. His first comic strip was originally called Hogan’s Alley, and was later changed to The Yellow Kid.

2356291566_BusterBrown3_xlargeOutcault was also the creator of the popular Buster Brown cartoon who later was associated with the Buster Brown haircut and Buster Brown shoes. Sales of the shoes came with a free Buster Brown comic book.

Almost a hundred years later, before Theodor Geisel become the beloved Dr. Seuss, he too was a cartoonist. Geisel drew mostly political and editorial cartoons. His early work was published in the Saturday Evening Post and then later in military newspapers and magazines during World War II.

It seems as if we have been in love with comic books for a very long time. Several children’s picture books are now, or have been, featured cartoons in newspapers and comic books.

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Many favorite comics are also full length books.
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Today children (and adults) are reading more and more comics under the new name, graphic novels.

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