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All-American Publications was an American comic book company founded in 1938 by comic book pioneer M.C. Gaines. Less than a decade later, the company was merged with National Comics and Independent News to form National Periodical Publications, the company that eventually became DC Comics.

All-American was the creator of a strong roster of superheroes that eventually became mainstays for DC Comics -- their most notable include Atom, Flash, Green Lantern, Hawkman, and Wonder Woman.


M.C. Gaines formed All-American Publications in 1938 after successfully seeking funding from Harry Donenfeld, co-owner of National Allied Publications (publisher of Action Comics) and its sister company Detective Comics (publisher of their namesake comic book). Donenfeld requested that Jack Leibowitz, National and Detective Comics' other co-owner, act as Gaines' partner in the endeavor.

All-American used the then-informal "DC" logo on most of its covers, as the logo was often used between it and National to capitalize on the massive success of Batman in Detective Comics. The companies were so intertwined that their characters often interacted within their comics, resulting in several All-American and National characters forming the Justice Society of America together, first appearing in All-Star Comics #3 in 1940.

Ultimately, All-American was short-lived. Seeing superheroes as a fad about to hit its downward spiral, Gaines let Liebowitz buy him out in 1944, so he could start his own comic company with other genres. Liebowitz then began a merger of his companies, first merging All-American and Detective Comics into "National Comics", and then merging National with Independent News to form National Periodical Publications. Despite not yet technically yet forming the modern DC Comics company, this company would informally be referred to as "DC Comics" nearly from its birth.

See Also


  • All-American, along with National, created the first-ever intercompany crossover with their creation of the Justice Society.[1]

Links and References