Death of Newspapers #4: Go Comics
has been running vintage Mutt and Jeff
strips with the copyright attributed to Pierre S. DeBeaumont. Who is Pierre S. DeBeaumont? The answer was revealed by a researcher for the now-defunct Google Answers:
The creator of Mutt & Jeff, cartoonist Harry Conway "Bud" Fisher (b.
1884 or 85; d. 1954), who had become very wealthy thanks to the
success of his comic strip, had married Countess Aedita DeBeaumont (b.
1889; d. 1985). Later they divorced, but Aedita DeBeaumont
nevertheless inherited the rights in the Mutt & Jeff comics after Bud
Fisher had died in 1954.
The United States Copyright Office database reflects this; in numerous
entries, ownership in the Mutt & Jeff cartoons is claimed by Edita S.
DaBeaumont [the typos derive from the database entries].
This recent (2005) online publication of Mutt & Jeff cartoons, on the
uComics.com website, bears the ownership notes "by Pierre S. De
Beaumont" and " 1993 Pierre S. De Beaumont".
It is only logical to assume that Pierre S. DeBeaumont, who very
obviously currently owns the rights in the cartoons, is a relative of
Aedita DeBeaumont and inherited the rights from her.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office lists a registered
trademark "Mutt & Jeff", relating to a 'cartoon strip, regularly
published in newspapers'. The trademark was renewed regularly (most
recently on 15 July 2000), and the owner is Pierre S. DeBeaumont.
This shows that the comic strip is indeed owned by Mr. DeBeaumont,
since otherwise he certainly would not bother to continue paying the
trademark registration fees.
Mutt and Jeff postcards (1909-10)
Labels: big little books, bud fisher, death of newspapers, go comics, mutt and jeff, pierre s. debeaumont, postcard