Saturday Leftover Day
Like many artists of his generation Harvey Kurtzman started working in comics straight out of school. He was picked up from the New York High Scool of Music and Art by Lou Ferstadt, who produced comic features for publishers such as Prize and Ace. Some of these early appearances of his work have been listed, others are still out there. Thankfully, goldenagecomics.co.uk has several Ace title on their files, so I could find two signed samples of Kurtzman's early work. It has been noted that he started working for Fernstadt in late 1942. Some of the features signed by Fernstadt in Super Mystery Comics #7 look as if Kurtzman could have had a hand in them (or as if Fernstadt had a big influence on Kurtzman's early realistic style). The earliest signed work sems to have been in #8. I found two signed pieces in another title, called Four Favorites. One of whoch seems to have been done earlier.
From Four favorites #8 (late 1942) comes this signed inside cover gag page. Kurtzman was mostly doing serious stuff. This is his earliest funny page I have ever seen.
From a later issue (#15) 5 have this signed cover. Look at the barbed wire on top of the fence on the right to see an abbreviated version of Kurtzman's name plus something that seems to be my initials G.A.:
I would like to have another look at the Super Mystery stuff before showing it to you.