Like the girls about town before her and the ones since, Boots made her first appearance during the early 1920s. A kewpie-faced girl with pouty lips, batting doe eyes and flaxen waved hair, Boots was a college girl, constantly surrounded by suitors (the titular buddies) and good times.

Creator Edgar Martin set many of Boots’ adventures in a fictional town very close to his own alma mater, Monmouth College. Fans immediately identified with Boots’ fashion sense, practicality and flirty good nature and over time, Boots and Her Buddies appeared in nearly 700 newspapers, for an estimated readership of 40,000,000.

The book that appears to the right of this article is one of many Boots-based publications. A Whitman-published illustrated story titled Boots and the Mystery of the Unlucky Vase, this book was part of a children’s book series which featured “the newest, up-to-the-minute stories for girls and boys” (as stated on its back cover). Other stars included in this series were Shirley Temple, Roy Rogers, Judy Garland, Blondie, Dick Tracy, Ginger Rogers, Terry and the Pirates, Gene Autry and Red Rider. That Boots appeared among such luminaries speaks to the span of her popularity.

The strip remained in publication until Martin’s death in 1960.