'Desperate Desmond', cartoon strip, c1955. Creator: Shirley Markham
'Desperate Desmond', cartoon strip, c1955. The dastardly Desmond plots a dreadful end for the heroine, but she is saved by Handsome Harry. Shirley Markham (1931-1999) studied Graphic Design and Illustration at Central School of Art in London from 1950-1952. The writer, artist, poet, and illustrator Mervyn Peake (1911-1968) was one of her tutors, and her style of drawing was also influenced by other British illustrators such as Edward Ardizzone, Quentin Blake and Edward Bawden. Markham spent time in the Dolomite Mountains in Italy, and also visited Rome, sketching classical buildings. After graduating from Central, she worked as a graphic designer, producing book illustrations, cartoons for comics, menus and programmes. She gave up her promising career however when she got married in 1957. Middle-class women at that time were expected to devote their energies to bringing up children and running the home, and despite her obvious talent, she lacked the confidence to return to illustration. Her portfolio remained in the family attic for many years, but now her work is published here for the first time. From "Kid Dynamite" western comic.
© Shirley Markham Collection / Heritage-Images
The Wild Bunch, American outlaw gang, 1901 (1954). Artist: Unknown
The Wild Bunch, American outlaw gang, 1901 (1954). Left to right, standing, William Carver (News Carver), Harvey Logan (Kid Curry); sitting, Harry Longabaugh (Sundance Kid), Ben Kilpatrick (The Tall Texan), Robert LeRoy Parker (Butch Cassidy). The gang operated out of the Hole-in-the-Wall Pass in Wyoming, a notorious haunt of outlaw groups, between 1889 and 1901 robbing trains and banks across the West. Their activities came to an end in 1901. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid emigrated to South America (they are said to have been killed by Bolivian police after a robbery in 1908), Carver was killed in a shootout with lawmen, and Kilpatrick was captured in Tennessee and sentenced to 20 years in jail. Kid Curry, the most notorious member of the gang in terms of the number of people he killed, was shot and killed in a gunfight with lawmen in Colorado in 1904. Kilpatrick was released from prison in 1911 but was shot and killed the following year while robbing a train near Sanderson, Texas. (Colorised black and white print).
© The Print Collector
Pat Garrett, James Brent and John W Poe, sheriffs of Lincoln County, c1880-1882 (1954). Artist: Unknown
Pat Garrett, James Brent and John W Poe, sheriffs of Lincoln County, c1880-1882 (1954). Lincoln County in New Mexico was the scene in 1877-1881 of a violent conflict between cattle ranchers and merchants in which the outlaw and gunman Billy the Kid was a prominent participant. Pat Garrett (left) was elected sheriff of Lincoln County in 1880 and charged with tracking down and arresting the Kid, which he succeeded in doing after a shootout. Billy escaped from custody and in 1882 was shot and killed by Garrett in Fort Sumner, New Mexico. Poe (right), who had been Garrett's deputy, succeded him as sheriff in 1882 and Brent in turn was elected to the post in 1885. A print from the Pictorial History of the Wild West, by James D Horan and Paul Sann, Spring Books, London, 1954.
© The Print Collector / Heritage-Images