Photo of Percy Crosby ©1998, Joan Crosby Tibbetts.
All rights reserved.
During his career as a celebrity American artist and author, Percy Crosby crusaded against corruption and stood up to the likes of Al Capone and his henchmen when American citizens were too frightened to speak out. He used his Irish humor and gift of satire to lampoon politicians, President Roosevelt, the Ku Klux Klan, and fought for civil liberties, child labor laws, rights of veterans, and freedom of the press.
Although he made a profound impression with millions of Americans, primarily through Skippy, the loveable and mischievous cartoon character who became a household word, Percy Crosby was unable to prevent retaliation by those who coveted control of Skippy for their commercial gain, and wanted him silenced.
Percy Crosby was falsely imprisoned in a New York mental hospital for the last 16 years of his life, following years of harassment by the IRS. He referred to this period of his life as a "political witch hunt". During this time, it is alleged, that Crosby's famous Skippy trademark and its valuable goodwill was pirated by a company, which later merged with a Fortune 500 company, making a fortune in sales under the Skippy brand name.
To learn more about Percy
Crosby and Skippy, visit www.skippy.com.
About Percy L. Crosby, Artist
Born in Brooklyn, NY 1891
"Rembrandt of American cartoonists"
The following information is excerpted from the official website of Percy Crosby at http://www.skippy.com
Percy Crosby was born in Brooklyn, New York on December 8,1891 to a family of modest means. His paternal grandparents immigrated from County Lough, Ireland at age 16, in the 1860's. His father, Thomas Crosby, was an amateur artist and inventor, who owned an artists supply store with his brother Ben. His mother, Fanny Greene, was an accomplished singer with interest in drama and theater she had acquired from her father, an actor.
Percy's artistic talents emerged at an early age, and he often used his father's oil paints and brushes to paint pictures on their backyard fence, which became a theme in the Skippy comic strip. When his father locked up these art supplies, Percy went to the coal bin in the cellar and used his creativity to decorate the cellar walls and floor, much to the delight of his sisters, Ethel and Gladys.
The Crosby family moved to Richmond Hill, Long Island, in 1900, then a small town surrounded by farmland, where Percy helped the milkman care for his dairy farm and deliver milk. He had many friends, and formed a club called the "Liberty Boys", who played soldiers and marched through the fields with their drums (old tin pans) and wooden swords. Another favorite pasttime was building pedal cars from discarded wood and wheels in the town dump. Percy's sisters were assigned as lookouts, and to raid the Crosby family kitchen for cookies and other goodies to feed the troops. These childhood adventures would later come to life in the Skippy comic strip and novel (1929), on which the 1931 Paramount films, Skippy and Sooky, were based. The Skippy movie was nominated for 3 Academy Awards, and Norman Taurog won an Oscar for best director. The film also launched the career of Jackie Cooper as child star, in the role of Skippy.
SKIPPY and the image of the character SKIPPY are trademarks and copyrights of SKIPPY, INC. Neither these marks nor the copyrighted works of Percy Crosby may be used without the permission of SKIPPY, INC. For information about licensing these images and trademarks, please email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Joan Crosby Tibbetts, President, Skippy Incorporated