Before Danny the Dinosaur: The Early Cartoons of Syd Hoff

Syd Hoff was a prolific cartoonist, writer, children’s book author and illustrator.  Born in 1912, he started drawing when he was four and never stopped. Serendipitously, when Hoff was in high school, cartoonist Milt Gross came to give a talk, saw Hoff’s work and predicted that someday Hoff would be a great cartoonist. On the basis of that encouragement, Hoff dropped out of high school to study at New York’s National Academy of Design. Two years later, at age 18, he sold his first cartoon to the New Yorker. He continued selling cartoons to them for the rest of his career. His cartoons also appeared in other magazines like Esquire, Ballyhoo and Judge. 

Besides cartooning, Hoff went on to have a successful comic strip, to write children’s books (perhaps the best known being Danny and the Dinosaur and Sammy the Seal) and to write novels and books about cartooning for young people.

Esquire 1934

Judge 1947

Charles Antell 1952

Esquire Magazine

Super Pyro 1948

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