Charles Lewis Bartholomew was born in Charlton, Iowa. He studied under Burt Harwood and Douglas Volk, and worked primarily as a children's books illustrator. He made newspaper strips like 'Cousin Bill' (1909), 'George and his Conscience' (1907), 'Bud Smith, the Boy Who Does Stunts' (1908-1912), 'Alexander the Cat' (1910), and 'Mama's Girl-Daddy's boy'. He is the author of several textbooks on cartooning and illustration. He was the dean at the Federal School of Illustration and Cartooning.