Little Lulu

Marjorie Henderson Buell, who signed her work "Marge", was a pioneering female cartoonist who had a long career working on various one-panel gag strips and illustrations. Originally from Philadelphia, Marge sold her first cartoon to the Public Ledger at age 16. Her cartoons and illustrations later appeared in magazines like Collier's, Judge, Life, Country Gentleman and Ladies' Home Journal. She is especially known for creating the famous 'Little Lulu' character. Originally, Lulu appeared as a single panel cartoon in the Saturday Evening Post magazine, as a replacement for Carl Anderson's 'Henry'.

Little Lulu, by Marge (1950)

The 'Little Lulu' panel ran in the Post from February 1935 until December 1945, when the feature was turned into a comic strip. By then, the character had already starred in a series of theatrical animated shorts by Famous Studios. Marge continued to work on the strip for another two years, and from then on only drew her character for a series of Kleenex advertisements.

Little Lulu, by Marge (1950)

By 1950, the strip was picked up by the Chicago Tribune-New York News Syndicate, who syndicated it to newspapers around the USA and abroad. New artists were Woody Kimbrell (1950-1964), Roger Armstrong (1964-1966) and Ed Nofziger (1966-1969), while Al Stoffel and Del Connell were repsonsible for most of the writing.

Little Lulu, by Marge

It was however John Stanley who expanded the 'Little Lulu' universe with several extra characters for the comic books published by Dell/Western Publishing, including her boyfriend Tubby. One of the main artists was Irving Tripp. Marge held the final rights to her creation until 1972, and then sold them to Western Publishing, that continued to publish 'Little Lulu' comic books until 1984. Marjorie Henderson Buell and her husband then retired to Ohio, where she passed away in 1993.

Marjorie Henderson Buell, ca. 1940
Marge and her son Larry, around 1939

Series and books by Marge in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:


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