Real Name: Unrevealed, if applicable

Identity/Class: Unrevealed (see comments; pre-modern era)

Occupation: Scarecrow

Group Membership: None

Affiliations: Albert Smith, Martha Smith

Enemies: Jarvis Cragstone, Johnny, Sue

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: The Strawman

Base of Operations: Albert and Martha Smith's farm, somewhere in America;
   originally the Smith's farm in New Mexico

First Appearance: Strange Tales I#81/1 (February, 1961)

Powers/Abilities: Composed of old garments stuffed with straw, the Scarecrow's size was temporarily expanded to gargantuan proportions when it was hit by the delta-rays of a nuclear test; it was also somehow endowed with sentient life during this time (see comments).

When it became animated, the giant Scarecrow could speak and move about, and it had the strength to topple a building.

After an unspecified number of days, as the radiation began to wear off, the Scarecrow's height progressively dwindled until it returned to its original size--its animating life-force also faded.

While it was "alive," the Scarecrow seemed to have the ability to somehow sense the locations of humans who were significant to it.

Height: 6' (by approximation); 60' (after exposure to radiation)
Weight: Unrevealed
Eyes: Inapplicable
Hair: Inapplicable

(Strange Tales I#81/1 (fb) - BTS) - Three years earlier, Albert and Martha Smith bought a farm from businessman Jarvis Cragstone--they built a scarecrow and put it out to guard their field.

   The Smiths diligently made mortgage payments to Cragstone, but the farmland was practically worthless, for they were unable to raise any decent crops--as a result, the elderly couple was left penniless.

(Strange Tales I#81/1) - When Cragstone learned that the government was interested in the Smiths' farm to be the site for a nuclear test, he foreclosed on the property and ordered the Smiths to leave; having no choice, the elderly couple gathered their meager belongings and departed sadly--they regretted having to leave their scarecrow behind, because they considered the strawman to be almost like an old friend.

   The next day, Cragstone completed the cash sale of the farmland to the military; shortly afterward, the property was subjected to the monstrous explosion of a nuclear test (see comments). The delta-rays produced by the explosion hit the scarecrow and altered its molecular structure, causing it to expand... and with the unnatural growth came the gift of life! The now-sentient behemoth made an ominous vow to deliver justice to the greedy businessman who had swindled its friends.

   On its mission of retribution, the gigantic Scarecrow ponderously walked across the farm-belt for a day and a night, unconcerned about the cries of fear and alarm from all those who saw it. The gargantuan strawman finally reached the town where Cragstone maintained his office, and spotted him through the window, so it toppled the entire building--fortunately for Cragstone, he managed to leap to safety through the open window, just as the structure collapsed. Cragstone tried to escape, but the Scarecrow stepped on his car and crushed it before he could get in.

   In utter panic, Cragstone fled on foot, but the Scarecrow eventually seized him with its vice-like grip and dangled him high in the air. Cragstone pleaded with the giant, begging to know why it was tormenting him; the Scarecrow explained that Cragstone had cheated the Smiths out of their property, and it demanded the money that Cragstone made from selling their land--the fearful Cragstone was thus persuaded and gave the straw-stuffed giant the bag of cash he made from the sale.

   As the unbelievable creature lumbered away, the entire town took a vow of silence, for the citizens knew they would be thought insane if they attempted to describe what happened, and they thought it would be best to just forget and pray that the living scarecrow was gone forever.

   Patiently, tirelessly, the Scarecrow lumbered through the countryside, searching for days--during this time, the radiation which had enlarged it began to wear off, and its size began to dwindle. By the time its search had ended one night, the Scarecrow was hardly bigger than its original size, but it finally located the homeless Smiths, who were camped in a clearing. The Scarecrow left the bag of money for the Smiths to find when they awoke.

   The following morning, the Smiths discovered the cash and were overjoyed, for they now had enough money to buy another farm.

(Strange Tales I#81/1 - BTS) - The Scarecrow continued to secretly follow Albert and Martha Smith; sometime later, the elderly couple used the money to buy another farm--with its last bit of life-force ebbing away, the Scarecrow (having since returned to its normal height) took its place in the Smiths' new field.

(Strange Tales I#81/1) - The Smiths were surprised to find their old scarecrow in the field of their new farm--unaware of the amazing events that had transpired, the elderly couple could only wonder why the strawman seemed to have a smile on its face...

Comments: Created by an unidentified writer and Jack Kirby.

Since the Smiths' farm was located so close to a populated town in New Mexico, my guess is that it was not an actual atomic bomb being tested there, but rather an experimental nuclear-powered device that malfunctioned and released radiation as it exploded.

In regards to the Scarecrow's growth: Maybe the delta-rays produced from the explosion contained size-altering Pym Particles/"Growth Pollen" from Kosmos.

But how did the radiation also endow the inanimate Scarecrow with sentient life? I dunno...I'll just attribute that to magical/supernatural forces at work...maybe it had a connection to some of those other "living" scarecrows (see clarifications).

Profile by Ron Fredricks.

The Scarecrow/The Strawman has no known connections to:

Albert and Martha Smith have no known connections to:

Jarvis Cragstone has no known connections to:

Johnny and Sue have no known connections to:

nuclear test

Somewhere in the state of New Mexico, the U.S. government conducted a nuclear test on the farm formerly owned by Albert and Martha Smith (see comments).

The resultant explosion released a stream of delta-rays, which not only temporarily increased the size of the farm's scarecrow to gargantuan proportions, but also endowed the strawman with sentient life.

--Strange Tales I#81/1

Albert and Martha Smith

An elderly married couple, they purchased a farm in New Mexico from Jarvis Cragstone three years earlier. They built a scarecrow and put it out to guard their field.

The Smiths diligently made mortgage payments to Cragstone, but the land was worthless, for they were never able to produce any decent crops--as a result, the Smiths were left penniless.

When Cragstone learned that the government wanted the Smiths' land for a nuclear test, he foreclosed on the mortgage so he could sell the land himself, and he ordered the Smiths to leave. Having no other choice, the elderly couple packed their meager belongings and sadly departed from the farm--they regretted leaving the scarecrow behind, because they considered the strawman to be like an old friend.

The homeless Smiths set up a camp in an open field, and their situation seemed hopeless. But when they later found a bag filled with cash, the Smiths used the money to purchase a new farm.

The Smiths were surprised to find their old scarecrow in the field of their new farm, and the elderly couple could only wonder why the strawman seemed to have a smile on its face...

--Strange Tales I#81/1

Johnny and Sue

A young couple, they were driving somewhere in New Mexico when the mountainous Scarecrow approached their car.

They were relieved when the giant creature lumbered past--it seemed to be uninterested in them, and they figured it was after something it considered more important.

(Comment: Hmm... you don't suppose they could've been a pre-Fantastic Four Johnny and Sue Storm? Maybe they were driving cross-country to visit Reed Richards in Central City, California? Anyway, although I have them listed as its enemies, there was no actual hostility between them and the Scarecrow.)

--Strange Tales I#81/1

Jarvis Cragstone

A greedy and ruthless businessman, Cragstone maintained an office in an unidentified small town in New Mexico. Three years earlier, Cragstone sold Albert and Martha Smith a farm, even though he knew the land was worthless for producing crops.

When Cragstone learned the U.S. government was interested in purchasing the Smiths' property for a nuclear test, he foreclosed on the mortgage and ordered the penniless elderly couple to leave so he could sell the land himself.

But the radiation from the nuclear test somehow brought the Smiths' scarecrow to life and turned it into a giant. The straw-stuffed behemoth lumbered into town, and Cragstone fled as it toppled his building. But the monstrous scarecrow eventually caught Cragstone and convinced him to give it the money that rightfully belonged to the Smiths.

As the giant creature lumbered away with Cragstone's ill-gotten gain, the relieved Jarvis Cragstone vowed to himself that he'd never cheat anyone again.

(Comment: Cragstone smoked cigars (see first image), so he probably carried matches or a lighter, yet he never realized he had the perfect weapon to use against his straw-stuffed foe (... or, to quote the Wicked Witch of the West, "How about a little fire, Scarecrow?").)

--Strange Tales I#81/1

images: (without ads)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p1, pan1 (Main Image - The Scarecrow; Johnny and Sue (foreground))
Strange Tales I#81/1, p6, pan4 (Headshot - The Scarecrow)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p2, pan5 (The Scarecrow (at normal size) in field; Martha and Albert Smith (background))
Strange Tales I#81/1, p5, pan3 (giant animated Scarecrow topples Jarvis Cragstone's office building)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p7, pan6 (smiling Scarecrow on the Smith's new farm)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p3, pan2 (nuclear explosion)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p3, pan3 (Scarecrow in field, hit by nuclear blast)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p3, pan5 (Scarecrow, endowed with life by radiation)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p3, pan6 (animated Scarecrow gets bigger)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p2, pan3 (Albert and Martha Smith)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p7, pan2 (homeless Albert and Martha Smith in their camp; Scarecrow (background))
Strange Tales I#81/1, p7, pan4 (Albert and Martha Smith find money from Scarecrow)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p4, pan2 (Johnny and Sue in car, as giant Scarecrow approaches)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p4, pan3 (Johnny and Sue, relieved as giant Scarecrow walks past)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p3, pan1 (Jarvis Cragstone sells the Smith's farm to the military)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p5, pan2 (in his office building, Jarvis Cragstone sees giant Scarecrow outside window)
Strange Tales I#81/1, p7, pan1 (Jarvis Cragstone, relieved after Scarecrow leaves with money)

Strange Tales I#81/1 (February, 1961) - unidentified writer, Jack Kirby (pencils), Dick Ayers (inks), Stan Lee (editor)

First Posted: 10/31/2020
Last updated: 10/31/2020

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

Non-Marvel Copyright info
All other characters mentioned or pictured are ™ and © 1941-2099 Marvel Characters, Inc. All Rights Reserved. If you like this stuff, you should check out the real thing!
Please visit The Marvel Official Site at:

Special Thanks to for hosting the Appendix, Master List, etc.!

Back to Characters