King Features Syndicate
King Features Syndicate is a print syndication company that distributes comic strips, newspaper columns, editorial cartoons, puzzles and game to newspapers around the world.
William Randolph Hearst was an American newspaper publisher. In 1895 his newspapers began syndicating material, and in 1914 all of Hearst's syndication enterprises were consolidated under one banner, "King Features Syndicate". The name was taken from Hearst's manager, Moses Koenigsberg (koenig=king).
Distribution and licensing outside the U.S.
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KFS made an effort to publish comic books of its own by establishing the publishing company King Comics in 1967. This short-lived comic book line showcased King's best-known characters in seven titles: Beetle Bailey, Blondie, Flash Gordon, Jungle Jim, Mandrake the Magician, The Phantom and Popeye.
The Blue Book (first edition published in 1943) was sent out to newspaper editors only, not the general public. It was used to promote all of the daily and Sunday comic strips available from King Features as well as other columns, articles and puzzles. The books contains black and white daily strips and full page, colour Sunday samples for every comic character available at the time as well as samples of other articles and columns.
Famous Artists & Writers
"Famous Artists & Writers of King features syndicate" is a limited distribution as sent to newspaper comic editors. It was copyrighted by Melvin Leighton Heimer on April 22, 1946 (second time on February 12, 1947). The promotional book measures about 18x25.5 cm and has a five page introduction thoroughly detailing KFS, followed by short bios for 50 comic strip artist and 17 feature writers, in total of 129 pages. Each bio spanning two pages and includes a photo of the artist as well as a specialty art piece. The five page introduction and the bio pages are written by Mel Heimer, television and New York columnist for King Features Syndicate,
A second edition of "Famous Artists & Writers of King features syndicate" was printed in 1949. It is a bit larger (about 21.5x28 cm) and has 172 pages in total. Comparing the Phil Davis bio, the 1949 edition has a different photo, sample of art and the text is also rewritten.
Among the cartoonist featured are: Milton Caniff, Roy Crane, Phil Davis, Walt Disney, Lee Falk, Charles Flanders, Hal Foster, Frank Godwin, Fanny Cory, Mel Graff, Jimmy Hatlo, Syd Hoff, Fred Lasswell, Otto Messmer, George McManus, Frank Miller, Ray Moore, Mac Raboy, Alex Raymond, Bob Ripley, Otto Soglow, Walter Winchell, Chic Young, Bill Zaboly and others.
The World's Greatest Comics
A Christmas Carol
King of the Comics - 100 Years of King Features (Back cover)
King of the Comics - 100 Years of King Features (inside presentation)