Mary Worth, by Ken Ernst (1950)

Kenneth Ernst studied at the Art Institute in Chicago, and became a prestidigator afterwards. In 1936, he joined the Harry "A" Chesler shop, where he cooperated on Star Comics and Funny Pages until 1943. He was also present at National Periodical Publications with 'Larry Steele' and at Western Publishing, with 'Buck Jones', 'Tom Mix', 'Clyde Beatty' and 'Magic Morro'. Between 1940 and 1942 he cooperated on the daily 'Don Winslow of the Navy' strip.

Mary Worth, by Ken Ernst (1950)

In 1942 he took over the 'Mary Worth' strip from Dale Ulrey, which he continued until his death in 1985. Ernst drew the strip, scripted by Allen Saunders, in a realistic style that had seldom been used in comics before, setting it apart from the more violent wartime comics. 'Mary Worth' became the prototype for a new style of gentle and sophisticated soap opera strip. The strip was eventually taken over by Allen's son, John Saunders, and artist Joe Giella, and it is still running today.

The first Mary Worth issue, 1943

Mary Worth at the toonopedia
Mary Worth strip at King Features

Last updated: 2007-06-16

Series and books by Ken Ernst in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:


Since 1999, Lambiek presents the Comiclopedia as a free service to comic fans from all over the world. The database has expanded to over 12,000 biographies of international comic artists, and also has an extensive Dutch section about comics in the Netherlands.
For 15 years, the site was funded from the resources of our Amsterdam-based shop. However, the current economical circumstances make it difficult for us to maintain this service. At the moment the Comiclopedia's sole editor works for us free of charge, aided by a couple of (international) volunteers.

If you want to help us continue and improve our ever- expanding database, we would appreciate your donation through Paypal.