1946 Milton Caniff Drawing

Value (2006) | $10,000 Insurance

GUEST:
This is Milt Caniff, the cartoonist, and my father. My father was a cartoonist in high school in Lima, Ohio, and went to Ohio State. And Milt was from Hillsborough and went to Ohio State. And Dad said, "Well, if my buddy Milt is this good, maybe I'd better do something else for a living." So he went into advertising. He was in advertising in Columbus, Ohio, and was president of the Advertising Club in 1946 and asked Milt to come out. By that time, Milt was the cartoonist for Terry and the Pirates. And so he called Milt and Milt said, "Well, I'll do you one better. I'll come out to Columbus and I'll introduce my own comic strip to you, my new one." So he came to Columbus to the club, and in front of all the club, he started to draw this. And he drew Steve Canyon, Copper Calhoun, and Feeta-Feeta, and that was really the introduction before the comic strip. And, of course, he gave it to my father afterwards.

APPRAISER:
So, this has been in your family the entire time?

GUEST:
Yeah, in fact, my father let me take it to college for two years to hang on my wall.

APPRAISER:
Amazing. You know, Milton Caniff, one of the greatest of all comic strip artists. He was called the Rembrandt of the comic strip.

GUEST:
Right.

APPRAISER:
One of the most popular of all time. In 1946, he had just finished "Terry and the Pirates," which was probably the most popular comic strip at that time. But he wanted to own his own comic strip characters.

GUEST:
Exactly.

APPRAISER:
So, he came up with Steve Canyon,

GUEST:
Right.

APPRAISER:
which would become a very, very popular strip, and it would run for over 40 years. Right up until his death in 1988.

GUEST:
Right.

APPRAISER:
So, here's Steve. I really feel sorry for Steve, don't you?

GUEST:
Yeah, it's a tough life.

APPRAISER:
Yeah, tough life. It's an amazing, amazing drawing. It's pastel on paper.

GUEST:
Right.

APPRAISER:
Look at the colors. They just pop out. I mean, these are 60 years old. It's just beautiful. When I saw it, my eyes lit up. I love comic strip stuff. And this is just so cool. And it's huge.

GUEST:
Yes.

APPRAISER:
It's, you know, three foot by four foot.

GUEST:
Yes.

APPRAISER:
What makes it even more special is the fact that this is his debut.

GUEST:
Yes.

APPRAISER:
This is the first appearance of Steve Canyon.

GUEST:
Yes, it is.

APPRAISER:
I wouldn't insure it for anything less than $10,000.

GUEST:
Really?

APPRAISER:
Absolutely. It's a masterpiece by a master comic strip artist.

GUEST:
Well, it has a lot of sentimental value.

Appraisal Details

Appraiser
New York, New York
Appraised value (2006)
$10,000 Insurance
Event
Philadelphia, PA (August 05, 2006)
Period
20th Century
Form
Drawing
Material
Paper, Pastel

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