Val the Ventriloquist
Frank Crane was an American comic strip artist and editor from the turn of the century. Crane was born in Rahway, New Jersey as the son of a cabinet maker, and worked as a lithographic artist around 1880. He graduated from the New York Academy of Design and became a cartoonist/art editor with The New York World and subsequently the Philadelphia Press, where he had well-known illustrators like F. R. Gruger, Everett Shinn, James Preston and William J. Glackens in his staff.
He is best known for his comic strips 'Willie Westinghouse Edison Smith, the Boy Inventor' (27 May 1900 to 29 November 1914) and 'Muggsy' (1 December 1901 to 4 July 1915), that appeared mainly in The Piladelphia North American, and the papers associated with the New York Herald's syndicate. He was also working for the Boston Herald, for which he drew his version of 'Professor Bughouse' from 1 January to 5 March 1905 (an earlier version was by Joseph A. Lemon), and 'Val the Ventriloquist' (1902). He spent his final years in New Rochelle, New York, where he passed away in October 1917.