Alfred Gerald Caplin, known as Al Capp, inherited his talent from his father, who used to draw comics for his family's entertainment. After attending several art schools, Capp found himself a job at age nineteen, with the Associated Press, doing a strip called 'Col. Gilfeather'. He moved to New York, leaving his strip to a young Milton Caniff, and began ghosting 'Joe Palooka' by Ham Fisher.
At the age of 26, Al Capp presented his own strip, 'Li'l Abner', to the syndicates, and it became a great success. In 1935, he also began a 'Li'l Abner' Sunday page, which was accompanied by the "topper" 'Washable Jones', a fairytale comic. Capp also wrote the first episodes of Raeburn Van Bueren's 'Abie an' Slats'. Al Capp went on to head Capp Enterprises in Boston, and established a Disneyland-like amusement park called Dogpatch. He became a humorous writer and critic. He continued 'Li'l Abner' until 1977, and died two years later.
photo © 1966 The Newspaper Enterprise Association