26.  Benjamin Edward Strange (1868-1930), cartoonist


Benjamin Strange was born in Ireland and was trained in drawing before he migrated to Western Australia in 1885. He worked as a dryblower amongst the many hopeful prospectors in the Yilgarn goldfields. Whilst prospecting, he maintained his interest in sketching, and his early humourous cartoons of the local scene were accepted by The Bulletin  in Sydney. 

In 1894 he joined the staff of The Coolgardie Miner and The Coolgardie Pictorial. His cartoons were published in other goldfields newspapers, and by 1898 he was also employed to work for the Western Mail  in Perth. 

Strange was a gentle satirist, devoted to Western Australia and to the British Empire. His favourite characters were Sir John and Alexander Forrest, Sir Walter James and John Scaddan. His sharpest cartoons were aimed at radicals and Labor politicians. A collection of his cartoons is held at History House, Armadale.