So tell … Who is/was the first character you really enjoyed reading?

Here’s a description of a character I read when very young, in a book that made my Dad laughter – so I had to read it too.

My first favourite – Lem Putt – has been so since I was a child. He’s subject (first-person POV) of a comic-monologue, later printed (© 1929 and renewed 1956) after years of delivery to audiences, by Charles (Chic) Sale in The Specialist. The monologue/book is funny (especially so to the eight-year-old me) even today being reprinted, with over 2,500,000 copies having been sold!
Lem has a real hill-billy country man accent, and proudly describes to his audiences the niceties of the art of his trade specialisation. Lem is of good heart, clear conscience, straight work ethics and refined customer relationships, as well as being master of his trade. His monologue begins…

“Mr. President and Gentlemen:
You’ve heerd a lot of pratin’ and prattlin’ about this bein’ the age of specialization. I’m a carpenter by trade. At one time I could of built a house, barn, church or chicken coop. But I seen the need of a specialist in my line, so I studied her. I got her; she’s mine. Gentlemen, you are face to face with the champion privy builder of Sangamon county.”

– – –

When I found it was still available today, I Had to go buy a copy, and yes, fifty-four years after first meeting Lem Putt, I still love him.

So please, feel free to tell me – which was the earliest character you remember and liked? Inquiring minds seek to know!

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