Gus Edson left school to join the army at age seventeen. After his discharge, he studied at Pratt Institute in New York. In 1925, he was employed by the New York Graphic as a sports cartoonist. When this paper collapsed, he moved from journal to journal before landing on the sports page of the New York Daily News in the early 1930s. There he made his first daily strip, 'Streaky'.
In 1935, Edson was asked to continue the popular 'The Gumps' after the death of its creator, Sidney Smith. In 1955, after a stay in Italy, he created 'Dondi', together with Irwin Hasen. This strip was criticized severely by those who considered comics an art form, but loved by the public. In 1961, Edson wrote the film version of 'Dondi', which became a huge box-office success. He died in 1966 - rich, but not famous.