Obscurity of the Day: Sammy Stahl


Joe Cunningham began his occasional newspaper syndication career with the eminently forgettable Sammy Stahl in the Philadelphia North American Sunday comics section. The feature ran from March 1 through November 22 1914.

Sammy was a gadabout cut from the same cloth as H.A. MacGill’s Hall-Room Boys. His life, like theirs, was a fiction of wealth and privilege built upon constant lying and Machiavellian scheming. The subject’s handling in Sammy Stahl wasn’t so much funny as chilling in light of the fact that Cunningham often didn’t give Sammy any comeuppance for his sins, as in the sample above. In short, a pretty poor excuse for a comic strip.

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