Comic Art 10 Oct 2007 08:19 am
- The Gumps debuted in a peculiar way. Old Doc Yak was the comic strip that Sidney Smith drew at the Chicago Tribune. Joseph Patterson, an editor at the paper, came up with the idea of The Gumps and asked Smith to move onto it. Old Doc Yak, a talking animal strip, had run its course and Smith agreed to move onto a strip about ordinary people in their lives.
In the last strip, Old Doc Yak and his family were evicted from their house by the landlord. The last panel of the last strip showed that empty house standing there. The next day’s strip showed the Gump family moving in and taking over the strip occupied by the Yak family.
Comic strips were more of an art form back then. First off, they were large enough to be able to read them. They also had a large enough popularity that they were able to grab a regular and large readership. This allowed them to be daring enough to try to grab a larger audience through whatever means necessary.
The Gumps was clever in many ways and provided the goods with an exceptional story line that had a very large audience.
(Click any image to enlarge.)
Here’s part 2 of the Early Years of The Gumps.