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Fred Basset, Daily Mail, 1984

Alexander Steel Graham was born in Partick, Glasgow, on 2 March 1917. He was educated at Dumfries Academy and served in the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders in the Second World War.

After the war he became a freelance cartoonist, contributing to Punch, Women's Journal and The New Yorker. One of his cartoons for The New Yorker originated the cliché of the alien saying "take me to your leader". His first comic strip was Wee Hughie in DC Thomson's Weekly News in Dundee, which ran for over 20 years. Another strip, Our Bill, appeared in the same paper from 1946, and he also created Willy Nilly in the Sunday Graphic, Graham's Golf Club in Punch, and Briggs the Butler, which ran for 17 years in Tatler.

In 1963 he introduced his best-known creation, Fred Basset, a daily strip about a basset hound based on his own dog Frieda, in the Daily Mail. The strip was syndicated all over the world, and Graham continued to draw it until his death, in Hastings and Rother, Sussex, on 3 December 1991, aged 74. A backlog of unpublished strips were published for eighteen months after his death, and the strip continues, written by Basset's daughter Arran Keith and drawn by Michael Martin.

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