Title and statement of responsibility area
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v. : col. ill. ; 26 cm.
Publisher's series area
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Toronto: Bell Features and Publishing Company, [1948?]-
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Canadian edition - as indicated on front cover - of an American crime series published in New York by Complete Photo Story.
Bell Features and Publishing Company produced other series, including Active comics and Comic crimes. The Lund Comics Collection holds issues of both titles, and they are described separately in the finding aid.
The appearance of Active comics - and other series issued by Bell Features - marked a significant milestone in the evolution of a Canadian comics industry. The development of Canadian comics had traditionally been inhibited by the domination of American products in the domestic marketplace. During the Second World War, this dynamic changed. The war effort placed pressure on the government to address the growing trade imbalance with the United States, and, in December 1940, restrictions were placed on the importation of non-essential American goods. Among the banned items were comic books, and Bell Features - as well as several other companies - came forward to fill the void. (Information taken from John Bell, "A history: English Canadian comic books" in John Bell, ed., Canuck Comics, Montreal: Matrix Books, c1986).
These competitors included Educational Projects and Anglo-American Publishing Company. The Lund Comics Collection holds issues of several of their publications - Action stories of the Mounties, Canadian heroes, Three aces comics, and Robin Hood comics - and they are described separately in the finding aid.