Wednesday, February 15, 2006

"Yesterday's News"

In my last post of February 12th., I commented on Abraham Lincoln's birthday and his birth site in Hodgenville, Kentucky. Oddly enough, just yesterday I was within spitting distance of it when I traveled to Hodgenville to have my annual tax forms filed with an old aquaintance who has done such for me ever since my wife, Debbie, and I were married 17 years ago. In fact, with all the leaves fallen from the trees this time of the year, you can plainly see the memorial building which houses Lincoln's birth cabin from the highway as one passes the entrance on HWY 31-E North. (As we passed, naturally, I wished Abe a belated "Happy Birthday".)

After we dropped off the forms, we traveled the 2 miles or so to downtown Hodgenville to an antique store, and I was talking with some of the locals who were telling me that in 2008 the 100th. Anniversary of Lincoln's Birth Celebration will begin, going thruough 2009. They informed me that the downtown section will undergo some major changes in renovation during that time.

And, while my wife looked around the shop at their various crafts and the like, I looked through a stack of old magazines from before World War II. There were some women's magazines from 1890 that were interesting just because they had advertisements for "Pear Soup"; a popular brand at the time. Interesting to me, because in our bathroom we have these two reproduction prints of Pear ads from that time period on the walls above our antique, claw-footed tub.

Then my eyes rested on a small stack of 1930's humor magazines such as College Humor and Judge, and I looked through them and purchased one for myself: Whiz Bang Annual #2 from 1940. Now this is not the "Capt. Billy's Whiz Bang" publication which were the pillar of the then forming Fawcett Publications. That had ceased publication in the latter 1930's and they had published numberous "annuals" (also, all of the Capt.Billy stuff was "Reader's Digest" size). No, this was by Country Publications who I suppose capitalized on the Whiz Bang title to capture readers, although it's contents were a little similiar in having risque men's cartoons (and the size of a common modern day magazine). What interested me the most about this particular magazine was that it contained cartoons by the late Henry Boltinoff (1914-2001). Now for anyone that's anyone who knows comic book history, and particularly DC Comic's history, knows that name very well! Boltinoff did numberous one page strips that any older comic collector remembers (my personal favorite being "Super-Turtle"). It was very interesting for me to see some of his earliest work as he had only begun free-lance submissions such as this 3 or 4 years before that time.

After staying in Hodgenville an hour or so, we headed over to Elizabethtown, which is about 10 miles away from there. We went to yet another antique-type mall we regularly frequent and I looked through several hundred inexpensive modern comics. One of which I should list on my "Beatles & Bizarros" blog listings, but I hesitate since it falls sort of into the advertizement catagory, and usually I don't list such appearances. But, this one does have an original drawing of John Lennon. It's on the inside back cover of the King Hell-Kitchen Sink limited series by Rick Veitch called The Maximortal. This particular issue is the last one from the mid 1980's (No.7) and it shows John wearing one of their specialty t-shirts. I would assume, however, that this ad ran in numberous issues by that company at that time, so it makes such an appearance rather borderline.

After the mall we visited with my father-in-law for several hours, who is to have a serious operation in a couple of weeks. Then, back home just to try to relax the rest of the day. We left at 7AM and didn't get back until close to 5 PM. I really needed another day off just to recover from the one I had.


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