As awful as The Kerry Patch Triplets is, it’s got a pedigree. This is the very first continuing strip in the World Color Printing Sunday section, back when (as far as we know) it was not even syndicated but was produced for and only appeared in the St. Louis Star. The strip was by Melville, of whom I know nothing, and ran from November 12 1899 to April 8 1900. From tiny acorns do mighty oaks grow.
Thanks very much to Cole Johnson who provided these rare samples of the strip.