Ink-Slinger Profiles: Earl “Jing” Johnston


Earl Schaum “Jing” Johnston was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on July 16, 1898, according to the census and his World War I draft card. Schaum was his mother’s maiden name. In the 1910 U.S. Federal Census, he was the only child of Fred, a cartoonist, and May. They lived in Pittsburgh at 5810 Holden Street. His father was profiled in yesterday’s post.

American Newspaper Comics (2012) said he produced, with writer Rupe Hainer, the cartoon panel Over Here which ran from 1917 to 1918 in the Pittsburg Leader.

Johnston signed his World War I draft card September 12, 1918. Like his father, he was a newspaper artist and cartoonist at the Leader Publishing Company. A family tree at Ancestry.com said his father passed away February 28, 1919.

The 1920 census recorded Johnston and his mother at the same address. His occupation was newspaper cartoonist. He also contributed drawings to the American Photo-Engraver. An undated painting by him is here.


American Photo-Engraver 11/1923


In 1930 he continued his cartooning in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania where he resided with his mother at 1519 Front Street. He was at a different address, 234 Seneca Street, in the 1940 census. He was married and had a five-month-old daughter. His mother and sister-in-law were in the household. He was cartooning for a publishing company. Tragically, two months after the census, Johnston passed away July 4 1940. His death was noted in the New York Times, July 6:

Harrisburg, Pa., July 5 (AP)—Earl S. Johnston, artist for The Patriot and The Evening News since 1927, died here yesterday of a heart ailment at a hospital. Mr. Johnston studied at the Carnegie Institute of Technology and had worked on The Pittsburgh Leader, The Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph and The New York American.

He was interred at Rock Chapel Cemetery.

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