Tuesday, Jan. 14 - Friday, Feb. 28
7:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Lamson Learning Commons
Lamson Library will feature an exhibit from January 14-February 28, 2014 that is dedicated to Foxy Grandpa, one of the most beloved cartoon strips of the Platinum Age of comics. Foxy Grandpa and his creator, Charles "Bunny" Schultze, appeared first in the New York Herald in 1900, and then in the New York American beginning in 1902. Later, over thirty books of reprinted cartoons were published by four different publishers, and there were Broadway shows and silent films featuring Foxy Grandpa. And it didn't stop there. Foxy Grandpa spin-offs included toy banks of cast iron, pins, dolls, postcards, spoons, and other ephemera.
Foxy Grandpa is about to be brought back to life by David Starbuck, a PSU anthropologist who grew up with a tattered, much-loved copy of The Merry Adventures of Foxy Grandpa which his mother had enjoyed when she was young. The exhibit will include Foxy Grandpa comic books, original newspaper pages, examples of period merchandise and, most prominently, original art work drawn by "Bunny" Schultze that has never before been exhibited.
Many early comic strips have come and gone, and those from a hundred years ago are largely unknown to readers today, replaced by strips that feature edgy superheroes, with ample doses of violence, loneliness, and R-rated themes. But that could never describe Foxy Grandpa. He was a product of earlier, simpler times when humor did not have to be risque, when family life was sweet and gentle, and when an older gentleman in a 3-piece suit and spats was "foxy" because he was (usually!) able to out-fox his two mischievous grandsons. Yes, this was an America that was more innocent than today, but through Foxy Grandpa and "Bunny" Schultze we are able to go back in time and experience the strong family values and low-key humor of our grandparents and great-grandparents. This was humor that makes us smile "just a little" as we recognize ourselves in the characters.
David Starbuck will give a presentation on February 25 from 5:30pm – 6:30pm at the Lamson Learning Commons.