Tuesday, April 25, 2006
Happy Birthday, Howard Garis!
If Howard Garis was still around, he'd be 133 years old. Who, the youngsters are asking, is Howard Garis? Just a guy who had a huge influence on my life, though I never met him. Garis was a writer. He created a character I loved as a kid, Uncle Wiggily, the kindly old rabbit gentleman. I even had an Uncle Wiggily board game. Other characters in the books were Nurse Jane Fuzzy Wuzzy, the Alligator, and Baby Bunny. But Garis wrote a ton of other things. He was the first "Victor Appleton" and wrote the first thirty-five Tom Swift books. He wrote most of the Motor Boys series, not to mention a lot of the Bobbsey Twins books (his wife wrote more of them than he did). And that's not nearly all. Baseball Joe and Dick Hamilton were also Garis characters. He wrote the Great Marvel series as Roy Rockwood (and maybe some of the Bomba books under that name, too). Most of these books have been long forgotten except by old codgers like me who read them in their misspent youth. They seemed wonderful to me then, bu it's probably better that I don't re-read them.