Skip to Main Content
Link to CSU Home
Link to CSU Home
Students in the Library

Michael Schwartz Library

Students in the Connection Lounge
Michael Schwartz Library

Comics and Graphic Novels

A guide for students or faculty to learn more about comics and graphic novels for research, learning, and enjoyment.

History of Comics in Cleveland

Ohio, called "the cradle of great cartoonists" by the Washington Post, has had a large influence on the history and continued legacy of comic art, cartooning, and graphic novels. Cleveland has been home to many influential creators of comics and graphic novels.

According to Jeff Smith, creator of the Bone series, the state of Ohio has produced "some of the most important and foundational figures in the field."

Notable graphic novelists, comics creators, and cartoonists from Ohio include:

  • Jeff Smith (Bone)
  • Bill Watterson (Calvin and Hobbes)
  • Jerry Siegel (Superman)
  • R. Crumb (Fritz the Cat)
  • Harvey Pekar (Our Cancer Year, American Splendor)
  • P. Craig Russell (CoralineAmerican Gods)
  • Jill Thompson (Scary GodmotherWonder Woman: The True Amazon)
  • Derf Backderf (My Friend Dahmer, Kent State: Four Dead in Ohio)
  • Brian Michael Bendis (Daredevil, Ultimate Comics: Spider-Man)

And many more!

For more information on the history and continued legacy of comics and graphic novels in Ohio, check out the following links:

Ohio State University Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum - Comprehensive list of cartoonists who lived or worked in Ohio

Ohio History Central - The history of Superman, created in Cleveland by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster.

Cleveland Review of Books - Comics in the Midwest: A Brief History of the Form

The 2021 Comics IssueThe 2022 Comics Issue - Every year, Cleveland Scene magazine publishes a curated list of comics by local creators called The Comics Issue. This is a good resource to learn about new and up-and-coming comics creators working in Cleveland. 

Local Comics Community

Support local comic book shops, publishers, and organizations. 

Comic Shop Locator - Find a comic book store near you

Genghis Con - Cleveland's Small Press and Independent Comic Convention