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1925 Advertisement
1930-12 Sky Birds
1926 Advertisement
1931-01 Western Trails
1928 Book Cover
1931-03 Golden West
1929-05 Northwest Stories
1933-07 Love Adventures
1930-06 Navy Stories
1943 Classics Comic #13
1930-09 Detective Dragnet
1944 Classics Comic #21









Arnold Lorne Hicks was born April 24, 1888 in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada. His father, John Gilbert Hicks, was born in 1861 in Canada, of Scottish ancestry. His mother, Alice Maude Brown, was born in 1863 in Canada, of Scottish ancestry. His parents married in 1883 and had seven children, Anne (b.1885), Ora (b.1887), Arnold (b.1888), Amy (b.1893), Eva (b.1895), Clifford (b.1896), and Cecil (b.1898).

In 1906, at the age of eighteen, Arnold Lorne Hicks studied at the Council of Arts and Manufactures in Montreal. After school he worked as a sign painter with the Asch Advertising Agency in Montreal.

On April 19, 1907 he married Jennie Robina McLeod. She was born on March 8, 1887 in New Brunswick of Scottish ancestry. They had five children, Clarence (b.1907), Walter (b.1908), Irma (b.1912), Audrey (b.1915), and Jean (b.1918). They lived at 2361 l'Esplanade Avenue in Montreal.

In 1913 the father of Arnold Lorne Hicks, John Gilbert Hicks, died at the age of fifty-two.

In 1915 the artist visited Chicago and New York City to explore opportunities in the American advertising industry.

In 1918 during the Great War Arnold Lorne Hicks did not serve in either the Canadian or the U.S. military, at which time he was twenty-six, married, and the father of five children.

By 1918 his marriage had ended unhappily, after which the artist lived separately from his wife and children.

In 1919, after armistice, Arnold Lorne Hicks left Canada and moved to Chicago, where he began to sell freelance illustrations through an advertising agency. He lived at 636 Buckingham Place. While in Chicago he attended classes at the Art Institute of Chicago.

In 1924 he was hired to illustrate a children's book, which was written by Esther Merriam Ames. She was born in 1890 in Illinois. Her father was born in Massachusetts and her mother was born in Canada. She was the manager of an advertising agency.

By 1927 his first wife and children had left Canada and moved to Chicago, where they lived apart from the artist at 1050 Sheridan Road.

In 1928 he and Esther Merriam Ames co-produced a second children's book, Twistum Tales, which was based on a popular brand of twistable toys.

By 1929 Arnold Lorne Hicks had divorced his wife and married Esther Merriam Ames, with whom he moved to New York City, to live at 710 Warburton Avenue in Yonkers, which is just north of the Bronx, and about forty minutes from Grand Central Station by commuter train.

While in NYC he attended classes at the Art Students League at 215 West 57th Street. Two of the most popular teachers at the school at that time were George Bridgman (1865-1943) and Frank DuMond (1865-1951).

In 1932 he illustrated Patsy For Keeps, a children's book written by his wife, Esther Merriam Ames. They also wrote and illustrated other children's books, including Tinker Town Tom and Young Andy.

His cover paintings appeared on pulp magazines, such as North-West Stories, Navy Stories, Police Stories, Detective Dragnet, Sky Birds, Golden West, Western Trails, and Love Adventures.

In 1940 he and his wife lived at 570 East Third Street in Mount Vernon, NY, which is just East of Yonkers.

In 1943 Arnold Lorne Hicks began to draw comic books for Classic Illustrated, such as Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, The Murders in the Rue Morgue, Oliver Twist, Silas Marner, The Prince and the Pauper, and The Black Arrow. According to comic book historian William B. Jones, "Arnold Lorne Hicks produced some of the strongest Classic Comics issues. He infused the relationships between characters with a grace note of gentle sympathy, deeper than the comic books of the period demanded. The artist's depictions of Silas Marner are among his best efforts. A sureness of purpose that informs the economy of line-work throughout the comic book makes it an unjustly neglected gem - much like the artist himself." (See Classics Illustrated, second edition, chapter five.)

In 1948 he was hired as Art Director at the Nolan & Twichell Advertising Agency in Albany, so he and his second wife left Yonkers and moved to Albany, NY.

In 1952 he and his wife left Albany and moved to Florida, where they settled in DeLand, where they bought a home, in which the artist used a spare room as his studio.

In 1955 his mother died in Canada at the age of ninety-two.

Arnold Lorne Hicks painted landscapes and exhibited regularly with local art associations, which brought him honors, awards, and local acclaim.

In 1968 he won the Florida Governor's Award for Art.

Arnold Lorne Hicks died at the age of eighty-two in Florida on November 1, 1970. His second wife died nine years later at the age of eighty-nine and is buried beside the artist with the epitaph "together forever."

                             © David Saunders 2016

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