Frank Temerson

From Bhamwiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Frank Temerson

Frank Zelig Temerson (born July 3, 1891 in Warszawa, Russian Empire; died July 27, 1963 in Birmingham) was a pulp magazine and comic book publisher.

Temerson was the third child of dry goods merchant Jakob "Jake" Temerson and his wife, the former Mindel "Minnie" Cypress in Russian-controlled Warszawa, now the capital of Poland. Through family connections, Jake emigrated to Alabama through New York in 1891. Minnie and the children followed, aboard the Hamburg-American line's Rhaetia from Płock (Plotzk) on the Wisła (Vistula) river to New York in 1892, and then came to Birmingham by train. The family attended Temple Emanu-El and celebrated the births of four more girls in Birmingham.

Temerson left school after completing the 8th grade and worked in his father's dry goods store in Brookwood. In 1913 he completed a course of study at the Chattanooga College of Law in Tennessee and began practicing as an attorney in Birmingham. He moved to Detroit, Michigan in 1917, but was soon drafted into the U.S. Army for overseas service in World War I.

After completing his service in 1919, Temerson moved to New York and joined fellow Birminghamian Isaac Ullman in forming the magazine distribution business Ultem Publications, known for cheaply-produced pulp titles like Modern Movies, Movie Stars Handies, Movie Humor, High Heel Magazine, and Silk Stocking. During the 1930s he also joined the Brookwood Publishing Company with Ullman, which included the Inspirational Publications and Speed Comics imprints.

In 1937 Ultem acquired the Star Comics and Star Ranger comics from Harry Chesler and Funny Pages and Funny Picture Stories from the Comics Magazine Co. By January 1938 most of Ultem's comics titles had been sold to Centaur Publications.

Temerson launched the first of several of his own comic strip imprints in 1939. Among them were Tem Publishing, Nita Publishing, and Helnit Publishing (named for his nieces Helen and Anita), the latter of which is notable for publishing a 6-issue run of "Green Hornet Comics" in 1940 and for originating the "Cat-Man and Kitten" and "Captain Aero Comics" titles which were distributed through Holyoke Publishing in the early 1940s.

Temerson's Et-Es-Go Magazines (named for his younger sisters Ethel, Esther, and Goldie) re-acquired those titles in 1943, distributing them as Continental Magazines along with "Suspense Comics" and "Terrific Comics". In addition to his publishing and distribution ventures, Temerson owned a dry goods store and hotel in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. In the late 1940s he provided capital for a proposed radio venture in Lancaster, Lomar Broadcasting Co., headed by Mark Braynes.

Temerson died in 1963 and is buried in Knesseth Israel and Beth-El Cemetery in Birmingham.


External links