College Comic Strip "Jasperman" 60's Campus Comic  Manhattan College
Jasperman best college comic strip Jasper Journal Manhattan College campus humor

"JASPERMAN!" Best College Comic of the 60's!
Jasperman top college comic strip Jasper Journal Manhattan College campus humor
Blast from the Past!

What's big and green and flies over the Bronx? (At least, he did back in the 60's.) No, it's not Mickey Mantle with a hangover. No, it's not Puff the Magic Dragon, either. If you attended a certain college in the green hills of Riverdale in the Northwest Bronx in the late 60's, you'd know the correct answer is "Jasperman". Jerry Breen's popular campus superhero appeared regularly in the pages of the "Jasper Journal" at Manhattan College from 1966 to 1970. For 4 years, young Johnny Jasper transformed himself into the "BIC" (Bronx Irish Catholic)  superhero and battled enemies such as the Fordham Ram, the mysterious "Hool" and Nixon's draft lottery. The comic strip reflected a college student's view of the outside world of the 60's - politics, sex, pop culture and society. In retrospect, "Jasperman" is a fascinating backward glimpse into that bygone era.

This web page will reproduce every episode  of Jerry Breen's "Jasperman" complete with  explanations of obscure references, and  notes on  contemporaneous events  both on  and off  campus.  Check out this page  regularly  and "return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear"!

When completed,  the annotated adventures of "Jasperman will be published in book form. Information will be  available at a later date.     410-683-1562
Jasperman comic strip Jasper Journal Manhattan College campus comic
At freshman orientation, all new "Jaspers" were given green beanies to wear (although only Johnny Jasper's beany had a propeller on top). Jim and Bill Crotty's "Pinewood" Bar was one of several bars patronized by Manhattan students. Johnny Jasper's magic transformational word "BIC" had nothing to do with Marcel Bich's ubiquitous ballpoint pen. It was an acronym for "Bronx Irish Catholic", the prevailing ethnic culture at the college. - Jerry Breen
The Origin of Jasperman
Jasper Journal vol.1, no.3, Friday, Oct. 7, 1966  

(The first printed issue after 2 mimeographed issues in the Spring of 1966.)

The  Jasper Journal was allotted an operating budget by the new Student Government. The Journal would publish on alternate weeks with the old student newspaper the Quadrangle.  ON CAMPUS: Brother C. Francis Charters, F.S.C., Dean of the Business School, died of cancer. Manhattan's new (non-varsity) club football team beat Marist College 13-6 in a "mud bowl" at Poughkeepsie, N.Y. 
OFF-CAMPUS: The album "Revolver" by the "Fab Four" - the Beatles - was #1 on the album charts for 6 weeks. New TV shows included "The Monkees" (called the "Prefab  Four"), "Star Trek" and "Mission Impossible". The groundbreaking underground newspaper The San Francisco Oracle was published. The U.S. Air Force conducted heavy bombing raids over North Vietnam.     410-683-1562
Johnny Jasper Is Captured

Jasper Journal, vol.1, no.4, Friday, Oct. 21, 1966

ON CAMPUS: Manhattan's branch of the National Federation of Catholic College Students (led by faculty advisor Father Bruce Ritter) planned a co-ed religious retreat called Novacor - a daring idea at the time. Manhattan College's own (low power) radio station WRCM broadcast from the 2nd floor of Jasper Hall.

OFF CAMPUS:  President Lyndon Johnson signed a bill creating the Department of Transportation. The Black Panthers issued their 10-point program of demands in Oakland, California. Folksinger Joan Baez and 123 other antiwar protestors were arrested in Oakland. The Soviet Union (Communist Russia) launched the unmanned Luna 12 satellite into orbit around the moon. LSD was made illegal.
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The "Jasper Spirit" bears a suspicious resemblance to that legendary comic, filmmaker and drinker W.C. Fields. "Horus the Hawk" was modelled after the "Groucho bird" from Groucho Marx's TV game show of the 1950's "You Bet Your Life". (I learned of Horus the Hawk in Professional Donald Woods' hilarious lectures in the freshman Ancient Art History course.) "Kelly's Green and White" referred to Coach Larry Kelly's club football Jaspers. - Jerry Breen     410-683-1562
Jasperman comic strip Jasper Journal Manhattan College campus humor
Gaelic Park, at 240th St. and Broadway near the southwest corner of Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx, was the home field for Manhattan College's Jasper football club. Built by the Gaelic Athletic Association of Greater New York in 1926 (shortly after Manhattan College relocated from its original northern Manhattan  campus to Riverdale), it was operated by the O'Donnell family after 1941. In 1991, Manhattan College bought the field.  - Jerry Breen
The Ram Is Trounced

Jasper Journal vol.1, no.5, Friday, Nov. 18, 1966

ON CAMPUS: Manhattan's club football Jaspers beat the favored Fordham Rams to win the club football league championship. In the Manhattan College Players' latest production, actor John Bertolini gave a powerful portrayal of Shakespeare's Richard II.

OFF CAMPUS: Actor Ronald Reagan was elected Governor of California as a Republican.  Another Republican politician, Edward Brooke of Massachussetts, was the first African-American elected to the U.S. Senate in 85 years (since the post - Civil War Reconstruction Era). NASA's Gemini 12 capsule blasted off (or, in NASA lingo, "lifted off") into earth orbit with astronauts  Jim Lovell and Buzz Aldrin . (Both would later become legendary for their exploits in NASA's "Apollo" moon missions.) U.S. Roman Catholic bishops ended the ban on eating meat on Fridays.     410-683-1562
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