New York Daily News – “100 Years Bold”

The New York Daily News is celebrating its centennial today, a couple days early.


The first issue of The Illustrated News appeared June 26, 1919.


Today, the Sunday Daily News celebrated with a 120 page anniversary insert.


New York newspaper collector and historian Michael Vassallo describes the insert:

It weighs in at 120 pages although 65 of those pages are ads (gotta pay the bills), leaving 55 pages of anniversary coverage. The SUNDAY NEWS had been covering the upcoming anniversary since the beginning of the year 2 pages at a time on Sunday (I have them all saved here) so a lot of this is not new to regular readers. Overall, it’s a commendable job, although not enough in detail to suit me. It’s a medley of covers photos and topics.

Michael continues:

A detailed history of the origins of the paper could have been presented (heck, get it directly out of “Tell it to Sweeney!”), although the opening did give a truncated version. But as I think about this, even as I type this, It never would have worked in this format. It’s just too much to cover in an insert filled with ads. It would have needed a format like their old Sunday Magazine, only done “thick”. Or use all 120 pages without the ads. But that would have cost a fortune, I suppose (although they could have also offered it for sale). A true 100 year history of the paper is still needed.


But there’s a major problem for the comics demographic. They don’t cover any comics.

For a newspaper that included many famous comic strips, and partnered with its sister paper from Chicago to create a major syndicate (that still continues today) you’d think it would get a page at least. But…

[S]adly and inexplicably, no mention at all of the Sunday comics, which absolutely baffles me. They were so important to this newspaper and their history. News founder Joseph Medill Patterson personally picked the comic strips for his new tabloid and totally controlled which strips were allowed in. The comics sold the newspapers in a way modern readers just don’t grasp. I just cannot understand how they didn’t even get a single, solitary mention.

The printed insert does have two-thirds of a page devoted to editorial cartoonists.

The intro copy makes note of long-time Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonist C. D. Batchelor and current political cartoonist Bill Bramhall. Ed Murawinski gets a mention, with a small repro of his famous cover. Also mentioned is Leo O’Mealia and his historic “Who’s A Bum!” cover.

above image via John Adcock’s Yesterday’s Papers

As John Adcock says:

Leo O’Mealia’s classic victory cover outsold every other paper that October Wednesday when the Dodgers beat the Yankees.

That earns the cover a place of honor in the Centennial anniversary insert:

Can you find it?


So that’s it. No Bill Gallo, no Bruce Stark, no comic strips.

The online celebration isn’t any better for comics fans. Though they do reproduce that first June 26, 1919 issue with McCutcheon from Chicago, The Gumps comic strip, and a couple others. But too small to read.


Thanks and a Hat Tip To Michael Vassallo for permission to use his review of the “100 Years Bold” insert. It can be read in full at his The New York Sunday News Comics History Group on Facebook. Michael also has a very good section on The New York Sunday News Comics at his Timely-Atlas Comics site. At the bottom click on the New York Daily News tag for much more.


above: Beyond Mars – exclusive to The New York Sunday News in the United States




5 thoughts on “New York Daily News – “100 Years Bold”

  1. I know the current lineup of daily Daily News (NY) comics: Zits, Jump Start, Hagar the Horrible, Mother Goose and Grimm, Pooch Cafe, Red and Rover, One Big Happy, Baldo, Gasoline Alley, WuMo, Pearls Before Swine, Dilbert, Blondie, Mutts, and the Argyle Sweater; plus the Jumble puzzle and the local strip Between the Lines; the Daily News also runs in its Sunday comics Doonesbury (fresh Sunday strips while daily is in reruns since March 2014) and Biographic. The Daily News in recent years sometimes idles daily strips when they take rerun weeks. And the Daily News is the only major NYC newspaper to carry comics daily and Sunday while the New York Times and (since 2014) the New York Post doesn’t carry comics.

  2. I forgot to mention Prince Valiant! It’s still in the Sunday Daily News comics, I guess. Sorry…

  3. The NY Daily News has apparently dropped its Sunday comics from the hard-copy edition.
    Any reports on this?

  4. Judith, my New York contacts (Hi, Doc!) tell me their copies of the July 7, 2019 Daily News included the Sunday Funnies. Apparently you got stuck with a bad ‘edition’ without the insert.
    An infrequent but not unheard of occurrence: I remember a time (longer ago than I like to think about) when for a month or so the S. F. Chronicle Examiner would exclude the inserts, including the comics, from their early Sunday bulldog editions meant for the boonies where I live.
    It wasn’t me, but a threat to contact the ABC may have put an end to that bad habit.

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