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Sunday March 20, 2011 3:43 pm

Bill Blackbeard: Eisner Hall of Fame




Posted by Tom Mason Categories: Editorials

Krazy KatIn the late 1980s and early 1990s, I worked a lot with Bill Blackbeard and his San Francisco Academy of Comic Art. We never met -- it was all phone and mail.

You can find him credited in a couple dozen comics and collections that I put together on behalf of Malibu Comics. Everything from squarebound collections of Spicy Mystery Tales and Spicy Detective Stories to comic book reprints of The Shadow and Sherlock Holmes newspaper strips.

Without his guidance, his help and access to his massive collection of organized material, those books wouldn't have existed, and I wouldn't have learned as much as I did.

His book, The Smithsonian Collection of Newspaper Comics, is an essential volume for anyone interested in comics. It was one of the first books on comics I ever read, and I still go back to it regularly. And it's one of only dozens of books he's been associated with.

He's up for induction into the Eisner Hall of Fame this year. Online voting ends on Friday.

Tom Spurgeon at The Comics Reporter makes the case for his admission far better than I ever could.

Blackbeard sold his massive collection to the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum at the Ohio State University. It was 75 tons worth of comics.

So, go read about Bill and go vote. He certainly deserves his place in the Hall.

[Artwork: Krazy Kat gets love from Ignatz by George Herriman]

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