Thursday, August 21, 2014

Froggie and His Friends, from Our Young Folks--June, 1873.

Scanned, and retouched, by me from my copy of Our Young Folks--An Illustrated Magazine for Boys and Girls (June, 1873).  Awesome, cartoon-style artwork, but whose?


More picture stories from the 19th century children's magazine, The Little Corporal (1873)

The Little Corporal's picture stories were part shadow play and part comic strip, with a hint of rebus (a type of word puzzle highly popular in 19th century children's magazines). Each Little Corporal picture story was followed, in the next month's issue, by a detailed text ("translation").  Were the folks credited for the picture stories (W.O.C., Private Queer, E.K., et al.) the text writers or illustrators (or both)?  I have no idea, though, somehow, I'm guessing "Private Queer" was fictional.

Comic strips and books of the 1800s--the ones I've seen, at least--tend to be quite light on story and heavy on gags, improbable situations, and extreme caricature.  By contrast, The Little Corporal's picture stories, with their realistic situations, mild slapstick, and matter-of-fact texts, strike me as a big step in the direction of the sort of comic stories I grew up reading.  And the artwork is an absolute joy.

Note the deviation from the shadow-play approach on the sixth picture story down, "Playing Truant."  Maybe the artist had intended to render the characters in silhouette but didn't have time?  And apologies for the absence of a translation to the last story--I don't have the Jan., 1874 issue containing same.  Enjoy these marvelous comics-coming-into-shape relics:

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Evolution of the comic page layout: My Father: A Poem (1819?)

This fascinating chapbook was published during the publisher's lifespan--1845-1847--but, intriguingly, the back cover/wrapper reads, "Published in 1819."  Could this be a reprint of an 1819 chapbook?  So far I've found no (Internet) record of an 1819 edition, but 1819 is certainly possible, since miniature books like this one, with verse and illustration interspersed in this fashion, can be found at least as far back as the 1700s.  So....

I haven't precisely pinned down the history of the text; allegedly, it was derived from another children's text (and gender-reversed!).  Lots of swiping was going on in those days.

Interestingly, if arranged on a single page, the layout of My Father--A Poem would look highly similar to the comic book-style 1875 montage, "Bertie and His Sled," originally featured in the monthly children's magazine, The Nursery:



Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Monday, August 11, 2014

More Ballou's Monthly Magazine cartoon fun (1875)

More MAD-style humor from Ballou's Monthly Magazine (March, 1875):

                               In black and white:

Sunday, August 10, 2014

1872, 1887, and 1890 magazine ads featuring cartoons with dialogue.

Cool cartoon ads from Wood's Household Magazine, The Youth's Companion, and Wide Awake.  Nine of these, in typical 19th-century fashion, feature dialogue below the panel, while two feature dialogue inside the panel, with the W.L. Douglas $3 shoe ad sporting a dialogue balloon.  The "Samantha at Saratoga" ad features a book excerpt (er, extract) to accompany its cartoon.

All scanned by me from magazines in my collection.

Wood's Household Magazine, August, 1872:

The Youth's Companion, Oct. 13, 1887:

The Youth's Companion, March 3, 1887:

The Youth's Companion, Feb. 17, 1887:

The Youth's Companion, Feb. 3, 1887:

The Youth's Companion, May 5, 1887:

The Youth's Companion, June 2, 1887:

The Youth's Companion, Feb. 24, 1887:

Wide Awake, November, 1890: