Vernon Van Atta Greene
(September 12, 1908 – June 5, 1965)
was a prolific cartoonist and illustrator who worked on several comic strips and was best known for his artwork on Bringing Up Father.
Born Vernon Van Atta Green in Battle Ground, Washington, he later added an “e” to his last name so it would be more distinctive. One of seven children, he grew up on a 650-acre ranch where he worked as a logger and blacksmith. He attended Toledo University in the 1930s.
Greene started his cartoon career drawing sports cartoons for Oregon’s Portland Telegram (1927-29), the Toledo Blade (1930-32) and the New York Mirror (1934-37). He was working for King Features Syndicate in 1935.
During that time, Greene was an active freelancer, creating advertising cartoons and illustrations for books and magazines. He illustrated for several Street & Smith pulps, including The Shadow, The Masked Lady and Perry Mason.
n June 17, 1940, Greene began drawing The Shadow daily comic strip, distributed by the Ledger Syndicate. He continued to draw the Shadow daily until 1942 (June 13) when it and other strips were canceled due to the growing need to run more and more war news coming in from the European and Pacific fronts during World War II. Greene served with the medical division of the Air Corps as a photographer at Kearns Air Base in Utah. For Pic magazine, he drew Mac the Medic and Charlie Conscript cartoons. After WWII, he attended Columbia University and was active in traveling with USO cartoonists tours.
For many years, he was the ghost artist on the daily version of Cliff Sterrett’s Polly and Her Pals strip. After the death of George McManus in 1954, Greene took over Bringing Up Father.