|Born||June 17, 1897|
|Died||June 20, 1963(aged 66)|
Wesley Morse (June 17, 1897 - June 20, 1963) was a cartoonist who is most famous for his creation of the Bazooka Joe comic strip for the bubble gum company Topps in 1953. He also created the Copa girl, which was the basis for the Copacabana logo.
Beginning in 1917, Morse spent a year in France with the Army.
Starting in 1921, Morse was a regular contributor of sketches to magazines like Film Fun and Shadowland. Chorus girls and flappers were frequent subjects of his. He also contributed art to advertisements in Collier's, Judge, and Life.
Morse was one of only two known authors of Tijuana Bibles in the 1930s (Doc Rankin is believed to be another), and memorably created a series of them that used the 1939 World's Fair as their setting and were, according to legend, clandestinely sold at the fair itself.
Morse collaborated with H. C. Witwer on the comic strip Switchboard Sally in 1925, and drew Victor E. Pazmiño's newspaper strip Frolicky Fables in 1926. He drew the strip Kitty of the Chorus in the New York Daily Mirror in 1925, and Beau Gus for the early comic book Circus: The Comic Riot in 1938. He also drew unsigned gag cartoons for Larch Publications.
Personal life and family
Before marrying, Morse dated extensively, including relationships with Ruby Keeler, Avonne Taylor, and Barbara Stanwyck. He had a son, Talley Morse, who was the basis for many of the Bazooka Joe strips.
- Morse, Nancy; Taylor, Kirk (2013). "Behind the Eye Patch: The Anonymous Legacy of Wesley Morse". Bazooka Joe and His Gang: 60th Anniversary Collection. Abrams Books. ISBN 9781419706325.
- Morse, Talley (2013). "Two Tuxedos and a Hot Plate". In Kochman, Charles. Bazooka Joe and His Gang: 60th Anniversary Collection. Abrams Books. ISBN 9781419706325.
- Spiegelman, Art. "Those Dirty Little Books" in Tijuana Bibles: Art and Wit in America's Forbidden Funnies, ed. Bob Adelman, Simon & Schuster, 1997, p. 5-6.
- "Guide to the SFACA Collection : Newspaper Comic Strips, Series I: Comic Features". Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, The Ohio State University. Retrieved 2008-06-04.
- Mosher, Chris. "Frolicky Fables". Retrieved 2013-04-03.
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