Timeline – 1998 Part 4

Beetle Bailey Sunday page digital proof, September 13, 1998.

In the Sunday page above, General Halftrack decides to go outside and select a volunteer for a dangerous mission.  For some mysterious reason, the camp is deserted.

Camp Swampy was inspired by Camp Crowder in Missouri, an antique relic from WWI where Mort Walker trained in 1941.  There are no army bases that look like this any more.
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Timeline – 1972 Part 3

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, August 27, 1972.

In 1967, Dr. Bonkus the camp psychiatrist, debuted in Beetle Bailey. He was short in stature with a bald head and an unruly moustache.

As Mort Walker explained in The Best of Beetle Bailey, “Every camp has a psychiatrist and no camp needs one more than Camp Swampy. Of course they got the psychiatrist they deserved, Dr. Bonkus, who could use a little help himself.”
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Timeline – 1971 Part 1

Beetle Bailey Sunday page color proof, February 28, 1971.

In The Best of Beetle Bailey, Mort Walker recounted the origin of Lt. Flap. “Many people had urged me for years to put a black character in the strip. The trouble was, if I made him a lazy goof-off like the regular cast I’d get complaints. Finally I thought of creating a macho type who liked wild clothes and Lt. Flap was born.” Walt “Clyde” Frazier of the New York Knicks basketball team has often by cited as a source of inspiration.
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