Krazy: The Black and White World of George Herriman by Michael Tisserand, December 6, 2016, Harper
First paragraph, first chapter:
The San Francisco Sunday Examiner and Chronicle landed on doorsteps on August 22, 1971, on what would have been George Herriman's ninety-first birthday. Inside the paper was a story by San Francisco State University professor, Arthur Asa Berger, detailing his attempt to write an entry on Herriman for the Dictionary of American Biography. In his research, Berger had obtained information from the New Orleans health department about a child of that name born in 1880. But, Berger decided, the child had to be a different George Herriman. The reason? The birth certificate was marked "col." for "colored." The cartoonist George Herriman, Berger believed, was white.
Krazy is the biography of the cartoonist George Herriman (1880-1944), creator of the successful comic strip, Krazy Kat. "Michael Tisserand brings this little-understood figure to vivid life, paying homage to a visionary artist who helped shape modern culture."
The book reveals that the cartoonist did not disclose his African-American ancestry in order to be able to continue his art and his work for a newspaper syndicate in the early 20th century.
A timely post to honor Martin Luther King Jr. Day, yesterday.
Meme: Every Tuesday First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros are hosted by Bibliophile By the Sea.