Born February 28, 1907 this Hillsboro, the Ohio native
graduated from Ohio State University in 1930. Moving to New York City in 1932
he secured a job with the Associated Press Syndicate and created his first
strip, "The Gay Thirties", a single panel strip. In 1933 he created his first
popular character in "Dickie Dare", an adventure strip featuring a small
The following year, when Captain Joseph Patterson was
looking for an artist/writer to create a new adventure strip fro the Daily
News, he tapped Caniff, who in turn created "Terry & the Pirates", and the
rest is history.
Terry was an immediate smash hit when it debuted on October
22, 1934 (as a daily strip, the Sunday page first appeared in December), and
it's success propelled Caniff forever into the eyes of the American public.
Throughout the thirties Caniff's "Terry" entertained
millions and was as influential in that decade as Mad Magazine and Famous
Monsters Magazine would be in the fifties and sixties.
During the thirties he was associated with the very talented
Noel Sickles who worked with Caniff in his studio and the two worked on each
other's strips (Sickles drew the aviation strip "Scorchy Smith"). Their
combined techniques created a cinematic style that was previously unseen in the
comics (it was however influenced by Roy Crane's progressive style).