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A Letter from Blakeslee

Link - Posted by David on December 2, 2014 @ 12:00 pm in

With Frederick Blakeslee’s birthday on Thursday this week, we thought we’d present a little something different that the usual “The Story Behind The Cover.” Today we have a letter from the man himself! Yes, we have a responce to a letter to Mr. Blakeslee from a fan in Pennsylvania who has saved all the Blakeslee covers he can get ahold of—unfortunately he’s having trouble getting back issues of Battle Aces (aren’t we all). However, Blakeslee himself doesn’t seem to hold his old cover work in high reguard.

At the time of the letter, Blakeslee was at the top of his form. He was producing cover paintings for Dare-Devil Aces and G-8 and his Battle Aces every month as well as the headers for the stories in each issue of Dare-Devil Aces. From November 14th, 1935:

Dear Mr. Yeager:

    Thank you. for your very interesting letter and I hope you will write again. Of course it is very gatifying to know that you like my work and have saved the covers for so long. I am sorry to say that the covers for the old BATTLE ACES have absolutely disappeared, as a matter of face I haven’t seen one of the magazines for years. I’m sure I don’t know where you can get any of those covers. However, you are not missing much, none of those covers were what I would call good or even fair, some of them were just rotten, I am rather glad they HAVE disappeared,

    Your sketch of the airplane is very good. I’m glad you like the S.E.5 as she happens to be one of my favorites too.

    Well, old man, I hope you will pardon me if this is short, but I must stop now and get to work.

He signed off with “Cheerio,” and signed it “Frederick Blakeslee.”

Since the letter’s so short, we have a bonus for you—a vacation snapshot Blakeslee had sent to Jesse at some point in their correspondance. Taken by some castle ruins somewhere between Cambridge & Oxford while on vacation in England in 1936. . .

And be sure to come back on Thursday for another letter to Jesse. This one’s longer and from 1959 after his pulp illustrating career has ended and he’s moved on to other things!

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