Elaine Meinel Supkis
Many people think a cartoonist at the New Yorker magazine made up those spooky Addams Family cartoons but he was merely echoing much older cartoons.
Each year, at Christmas, good little boys and girls in the Victorian Era got books called "St. Nicholas Books" which had a wide variety of puzzles, projects, books, stories and cartoons. This one is from one of my oldest books of this sort.
Published in 1881, volume VIII of the series, the artist who is very good and extremely funny, is totally anonymous. One longs to know who penned these cartoons. I will post a few examples.
One thing that strikes me is how Victorians, even as they built their spooky houses, considered them SPOOKY. This is something to consider. Deliberately raising one's children in a haunted house! I was born in a Victorian haunted house. This is probably why I renovated so many of them and am drawn to dark, dank, broken, bizarre Victorian houses.
Once, while house hunting, I wanted desperately to buy this bizarre 1875 mansion that sat on a high bluff above the crashing seas. It even had a Widow's Walk that probably was the site of more than one suicide, it certainly was picturesque.
That very same day, I was given this book by my father-in-law who was a publisher. "Haunted Houses of America" was the title and the property I wanted was deep inside. I laughed up a riot. Har.