Right around the time that George Luks was dumping his version of Hogan’s Alley in favor of a different sort of series for the New York World (the incredibly bizarre Mose’s Incubator, which we’ll cover one of these days), a new kid gang feature was in the offing in the comics section. The Captain Kidd Kids offered the same sort of jam-packed panels as the Hogan’s Alley series, and a vast group of kids. But these kids aren’t street urchins, but rather a group of friends who have formed a junior adenturers’ club. Starting with the inaugural episode on November 21 1897, the kids set off on a sailing ship in search of Captain Kidd’s treasure.
The series is full of fantasy elements, some of which are dark and scary enough to give child readers some real humdinger nightmares on Sunday night (the sea ape even gives me the willies). For this we can thank versifier R.K. Munkittrick and cartoonist J.B. Lowitz.
On January 9 1898 the children arrive at the place where Captain Kidd’s treasure is hidden, and in spite of a whole exobiology textbook’s worth of gruesome monsters in their way, the kids manage to snag the booty. This episode ends with a “To Be Continued” tag, but it seems to be the last of the series. One hopes that the kids got back safe and sound.