Alex Raymond (1909-56) was a native of New Rochelle, N.Y. He tried several different careers– and was even a stockbroker for a period, but his first love was always art. His cartooning career started in 1930 as an assistant to Russ Westover on Tillie the Toiler. He went on to assist with other King Features strips, including Lyman Young’s Tim Tyler’s Flying Luck. In 1933, he was selected to draw the upcoming Dashiell Hammett-scripted daily action strip, Secret Agent X-9.
It was around the same time that he pitched his own strip, Flash Gordon, to King Features, as an answer to Buck Rogers.
Both Secret Agent X-9 and Flash Gordon launched in January, 1934.
Raymond kept up the hectic pace demanded by two concomitant features for a year and a half before leaving X-9 to concentrate on the lush, highly detailed Flash Gordon and its accompanying topper, the adventure strip Jungle Jim.
Raymond worked on Flash Gordon for ten years before enlisting to serve in the Marines during World War II.
Since then, many talented artists have guided Flash’s adventures, including comic book legend Mac Raboy and the great Dan Barry.