After World War One, the American and Canadian public became preoccupied with the true adventures and exploits of aviator pilot hero’s. Every week would bring another speed record, new aircraft endurance records, and even sudden death. This soon inspired a series of new aviation adventure strips in American newspapers. Tailspin Tommy by Hal Forrest appeared in 1929, then Scorchy Smith by John Terry in 1930, followed by an aviation pilot who would last for the next forty-years, “Smilin” Jack” by Zack Mosley, appearing 1 October 1933. This first Sunday strip appeared in the Chicago Tribune with the original title “ON THE WING” featuring a young kid pilot named “Mack” Martin. The amusing part is the fact artist Zack Mosley first created a pilot hero who never smiled and always carried a grim face.
Research by Clarence Simonsen