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Bancks, James Charles (Jim) (1889–1952)

from Sun (Sydney)

James Charles (Jim) Bancks, creator and artist of the Ginger Meggs comic feature which appeared weekly in the Sunday Sun for 29 years, died suddenly early this morning at his Point Piper home, aged 63.

Mr. Bancks, who suffered a coronary occlusion almost two years ago, appeared in the best of spirits when he retired last night.

He leaves a widow and an eight-year-old daughter.

Bancks' first job was that of part office-boy, clerk and lift-driver for the Australian Mercantile, Land and Finance Company.

Dreaming of escape from what looked like a lifetime of drudgery, he began to practise drawing in his spare time and sold his first cartoon in 1914.

His next cartoon was accepted by the Bulletin, which nurtured his early aspirations.

He later took a full-time job with the Bulletin at a guaranteed £8 a week and began to take drawing lessons.

The creation of Ginger Meggs and Min, which was to win the hearts of millions of children in every country of the British Commonwealth, America and elsewhere, arose during his early associations with the Sunday Sun.

The first Ginger Meggs strip appeared in the Sunday Sun on November 27, 1921.

From that day when the red-headed, cheeky young Australian Ginger Meggs made his bow, he became the incarnation of Australian youth and the nation's best-loved character.

Bancks himself became one of the world's recognised leading cartoonists during his 29 years with the Sunday Sun and was showered with congratulations from the great of many countries.

Bancks himself claimed that his seemingly inexhaustible source of ideas for his famous feature was the result of his childhood days at Hornsby (then a small country town) — with its swimming holes, orchards, cricket and football.

Cheerful, bespectacled, humorous Jimmie Bancks became the highest-paid artist in Australia, with innumerable friends in every walk of life.

Last year, Bancks, after 29 years with the Sunday Sun, transferred to the Sunday Telegraph.

After a service in St. Mark's. Church of England. Darling Point, beginning at 11 am tomorrow, the funeral will leave for the Northern Suburbs Crematorium. Recent study of .1. C. Bancks.

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Citation details

'Bancks, James Charles (Jim) (1889–1952)', Obituaries Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, http://oa.anu.edu.au/obituary/bancks-james-charles-jim-5119/text35427, accessed 10 December 2019.

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