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VO L. 1, N O .3 T HE CLEME NTS LIBRARY ASSO C IATES APRlL.

1995

AMERICA IN A MIRROR: CARICATURE AS HISTORY


Caricature ha s a long tradition in moralize, or to focu s public opinion on unexpected incon gruitie s. "A good
American popular culture. Pictures that any target he chooses . His onl y obli ga- caricaturi st needs no great talent in any
use exagg eration and wit to make a tion is to use his art to express an idea, other artistic direction ," cartoon ist
political point, a social comment, or a and to make that idea accessibl e and Boh un Lynch insists. "He is govern ed
moral judgment ha ve had a peculiar engaging to the broadest audien ce. only by his own sense of truthful
power over our imagination. misrepre sentation."
Whatever the rhetori c, As rhetori c or pole mic,
written or spoken , it has American caricature has an
often been the cartoon, ho norabl e tradition.
journalism's most devastat- Cartoonists have expos ed
ing weapon, that has made abuses of power, the
an issue or an individual corru ption of governm ent,
stick in the public mind. and the hypocrisy of
"Caricature," according society. At their most
to editorial cartoonist trivial, cartoons provide a
Draper Hill, "is not a running commentary on
sy no ny m for satire, or even events, people, attitudes,
a genre of drawing . It is a and preoccup ation s, their
language of exaggeration , a influence no more than one
method of projecting inner fac tor in any given politi cal
characteristics,' real or climate. The y reflect the
imagined , into appear- mom entary shifts in publ ic
ances ," Th e cartoonist sentiment. At its most
combin es caricature with a skillful, American caricature
code - a set of symb ols or has been moral satire. When
emblems, the visual Thomas Nast exposed the
metaphors that speak to corruption of Boss Tweed, or
people living in a particular . crusaded for minority rights,
time and place. Con se- or denounced the futility of
quently, caricature is war, he followed a tradition
ephemeral. When we no Cartoonist Grant Hamilton used nursery rhyme imagery to make a that began in the Reforma-
longer understand its code, simple point - corruption is bipa rtisan. Republican Boss Platt licks tion with Luther 's satirical
when its me ssage has lost the platter of New York state patronage clean; seated is Dem ocratic woodcuts, and continued
its imm ediac y, it lose s its Boss Croker. his stomach bulging. From Judge, Nove mber 19, /898. with Bruegel, Callot,
imp act on our imaginations. Hogarth, Goya, and
Yet, it is this transient Daumier.
quality that make s cartoons so valuable Caricature, as art historian Ronald Although the idea of caricutura
as historical evidence , as a vernacular Paulson has written, has two components exaggerating a human form for comic
record of our political values and socia l - the repre sentational and the rhetori- effect - began in late sixteenth century
mores. Becau se caricature is designed cal. As pictu res of people, objects, or Italy. printed caricature , as a form of
fur print , for popular con sumption in the scenes, caricature ranges freely around political and social commentary, is the
cheapest format, it is the most genuinely artisti c conventions. It takes familiar invention of eighteenth century England.
demo cratic art. It is the perfe ct device settings and human emotions or the As a popular political culture developed
for criticism. The cartoonist doesnot images of allegory, folklore, history, or in the relatively free climate of mid-
have to justify his point of view; he can fanta sy, compresses them into one eighteenth century England, the demand
use his art to report , accuse, entertain, picture, and make s us laugh by the fur information and for comment grew.
- contin ued 011 page /2
Above : "A Conference between the Devil and Doctor Dove," by Henry Dawkins (Philadelphia, 1764), is one ofthe earliest American
political cartoons. Doctor Dove, a writer of scurrilous verse for Pennsylvania 's Proprietary Party, is shown kneeling before the Devil (his
own demon's tail visible beneath his coatta ils), "Thou Great Prince of Darkness, ass ist me in my Undertakings." Satan replies, "Well
done, thou Good and Faithful Servant." From the origin of caricature in the satirical woodcuts ofthe Ref ormation, the Devil has been a
common motif.

Below : Pirating material from English sources was standa rd practice in colon ial publishing. Paul Revere lifted "The able Doctor; or
America Swallowing the Bitter Draught " from the London Magazine. He app ropriated the cartoon to the radical cause by adding the
word TEA, publishing it in 1774 to mobilize support for Boston when Parliament passed retaliatory legislation following the notorious tea
party.

PAGE 2 THE QUARTO


Cartoons in the /790s were the work of anonymous amate urs. They were relentlessly political in content, often cluttered in design .
"Congressional Pugilists " (/798) records an unedifying moment in American history when a Vermont Congressman accused of cowardice
spat in the fa ce of his colleague from Connect icut. They Jought with. cudgel and fire tongs until separated.

Graphic satire was an important compo nent in periodicals during the first decades ofthe nineteenth century. The Echo, published by Richard A lsop (Boston,
/ 807- / 8/ 2), was openly hostile to Jefferson. It ran a particularly viciou s series of cartoons by Tisdale and Leney in 1807. One was "Infan t Liberty Nursed by
Mother Mob." A slattern holds an infant to huge breasts lahele d " whiskey " and "rum," In the background Jefferson 's "republican mob" storms a public
building.

THE CWARTO PAGE 3


Right : William Charles hod learned the
engraver's trade in London be/ore
em igrating to Philadelp hia in 1808, and he
borrowed f reelyfrom the work ofGillray. A
popular, prolific artist duri ng the Wa r of
1812, Charle s helped make the cartoon part
of our national political life. In "John Bull
Making a Nell' Batch of Sh ip s to Send to the
Lakes" (1814), Charl es ridicules the Brit ish
loss of their ent ire Great Lakes fleet to the
Am ericans. King George sput ters, " What,
What, What! " 10 his right a man warn s,
" You had bette r keep both your ships and
guns at home. If you send all you 've got to
the Lakes, it will only make fun for the
Yankl')'s to take them."

Below: Philadelphian Edward Clay's social


satire (ca. 1830 ) conlmUS a Quaker ofplain
but elegant dress. accompanied b.v his ... - ' -. ..- -r-w- ;""!P'! .- """'''''1'--:-
lovely dau ghte r, with WI Irish immigrant j[OJ!ll d l !llJ. L lIlalW Li) It IIfIIJ ~ATCH .r SHIPS to send fa tll£ 71. A !KE$
carrying his worldly po ssessions 0 11 his
back . clay pipe stuck in the band of his high -crowned hat. A guest, mo unted 011 a well-bred ho rse, is welcomed to the Quaker 's prosperous
home. But the Irishman, as king direction s to Phila delph ia, is gi ven a condesc ending answer, one that belies the Quaker reputation jar
tolerance.

1 S l1.y. tJais u n 't tA~ roa -d: eq F r irn. rf. thft JiNt t"Us me a. (ie d na tlt.~" tht e
PAil~'fky ..4"'''6)1 . i.. it .' M ks me .1. 9U.~stU,1t.l t ru. ly tht.J is the road ./

PA GE 4 THE Q\)ARTO
Technology revolutionize d the popular market for cartoons in the J820s . Commercial lithography, a relatively inexpensive, flexible process
by which impressi ons are taken f rom designs inked on stone, replaced the difficult process of engraving on metal. Prints coul d be mass
produc ed on cheap, single shee ts. The result was a floo d ofpolitical cartoons during the Jacksonian Era (1828-1840). In his fir st message
to Congress, President Jackson proposed sending Native Americans to unoccupied land west of the Mississippi. By May J830, the Indian
Removal Bill had become law. An anonymous artist, with. masterful san'Wim, drew Jackson as the Great Father.

THE Q1JARTO PAGE 5


Above: Lola Montez , celebrated "European" beauty, mistress variously of Liszt, Dumas, and a Bavarian king, arr ived on the New York
stage in 1852, billed as a "Spanish dancer." No amount of publicity could disguise her limited talent. Johnston records the "enthusiastic
reception of Lola by an American audi ence" - one Quaker, who hardly dares to look , and one dismayed gentleman, peering over his New
York Herald, whose pages endlessly had promoted Lola.

David Claypool Johnston had ambitions to


become America 's Cruiksh ank. Although
the quality of his draf tsmanship was uneven,
his caricatures, published as book
illustrations and single sheets, show he had
an eye for human foibles and the ability to
translate them into witty drawings.

Left: Johnston '.'I ingenious cartoon


envelope allowed him to change a
politician '.'I express ion with the pull of a
tab, a device he used to comment on the
results ofseveral presidential electio ns. His
1849 version, Metamorphosis: A Locofoco
Before, and After, the Late Elec tion, shows
a radical Democrat reacting to the news
that Whig candidate Gen. Zachar)' Taylor
has defeated Democrat Lewis Cass -
"Hurra For Cass.''' changes to "What.' Old
Zack Elected."

PAGE 6 THE QlJARTO


Comic almanacs began to appear in the 1830s. a welcome relieffrom the moraliz ing fare of conventional almanacs. From them evolved the
illustrated humorous weekly. Yankee Notion s: or, Wh ittlings from Jonathan' s Jack-kn ife, is representative ofthe genre. Chauvinistic, racist,
bigoted, its favorite targets were foreign immigrants, Jews. Blacks, and women. Racial stereotypes used in facial features and dialects were
standard devices f or cartoonists like Augustus Hoppin. His cover for Febraury; 1853, had Jonathan and son Junior commenting on the
stupidity of a "[ urriner " who has fa llen through the ice.

T HE QUARTO PAGE 7
O jd. :i\Inrtn lhitn n nin. a n d h e r- Peu uy Brt l111d ....

Above: Vanity Fair, A merica 's Punch during the 1850-60s, owed its popularity on the eve of the Civil War to the ca rtoon s of Henry Louis
Stephens, as they refl ected the controversies tear ing the nation apa rt, During the 1860 presidential campaign, Step hens caricatured
Douglas as a pious hypocrite. Lincoln 's inau gu ral add ress. M arch, 186 1. had been conci liatory towa rd the South on slavery, hut fi rmly
opposed sec ess ion. Stephens drew Lincoln balancing hope for p eace aga inst the reality that Confederate guns had fi red on Fl. Sumte r.
Stephens , in 1862, raged against "Old Ma nn Britann ia " jor her continued sympathy with the South, but he was ambivalent 011 emancipation,
unconvinced thatfreed slaves wou ld find kinder maslcrs.

PAGE 8 THE Q!)ARTO


Right: Theft rst issue of Richmond 's
Southern Illustrated News, September,
1862, carried an advertisementfor
engravers and the blocks of ash wood used
to make newspaper WOOdClitS. It would
replace Harper 's Weekly in the South and
he the Confederacy's only pictorial
magazine. Cartoons were a regular feature.
"Butler; the Beast, at Work," carried on
April30, 1864, shows the hated Benjamin
Butler. Appointed military admin istrator
when Union troops took New Orleans in
1862, Butler incensed the South with his
order that a local woman who insulted
Union officers or soldiers "shall be
regarded and held liable to be treated as a
vv'oman of the town plying her avocation.
Today, copies of the Southe rn Illustrated
News are extremely sca rce.

'tHE GUlSB ,.!1T CAN DIOATE


Above: During the Civil War, Currier and Ives mass produced lithograph cartoons. Hastily done , few were well drawn. 17Je best were by
Louis Maurer. "The Gunboat Candidate at the Battle of Malvern Hill" appeared during the 1864 Presidential election. Democratic
candidate General McClellan is accused of incompetence. Sitting safely in his saddle mounted on the boom of the ironclad Galena (a
reference to his abortive gunboat attack on Richmond and the battle ending the disastrous 1862 Peninsular Campaign), his uniform
immaculate, McClellan urges, "Fight on my brave Soldiers and push the enemy to the wall, from this spanker boom your beloved General
looks down upon you. "

TH E QlJ A RTO PAGE 9


Thomas Nast, America's greatest political
cartoonist, influenced public opinion for
three decades. Between 1862 and 1885,
over 3,000 ofhis drawin gs appeared in
Harper 's Weekl y. Nast was a genius in
creating powerful images that simplified
issues and focused emotions . He is
remembered as the creator of Santa Claus,
the Tammany Tiger, the Republican
Elephant, and the Democratic Donkey. Like
all great satirists, Nast had a strong moral
sense. He crusaded for the rights of Native
Americans and against the corruption of
New York 's Tammany Hall, yet he was
capable of using ethnic stereotyp es so
vicious that they may reasonably be
described as racist.

Right: In "Move On," Nast used ethnic


stereotyp es of both European immigrants
and Native Americans to argue the injustice
of excludin g the latter group while allowing
the former to become full citizens.

Below : The Irishman 's image in American and English caricature had evolved from the crude but benign Paddy of the 18305 into a
menacing, simian brute by the 18605. Nast. using the code for Irishmen fi rst seen in Pun ch cartoons - the sloping forehead, long upper
lip, huge mouth, and j utting ja w - depicted Irish marchers attacking policemen during the St. Patrick 's Day riot of 1867.

PAG E 10 T HE QUARTO
Left: Judge attracted a stable
ofartists whose talents were
enlisted for the Republican
Part): Gram Hamilton 's "How
Women 's Suffrage Will Increase
the Power a/the Ward Heeler "
(189 4) is typical in using
p rejudice again st Irish
immigran ts andf ear of corrupt
politicians as a rationale for
denying women the right to
vore.

. :.,~~ ~:,,:
.""' ............
-
HOW WOME N'S sunRAbe WI LL INCR EASE T iU! P~WER Of' THE W ARD H £erE~
"

..
~~ "-.;,,X'~

'r"""----
,

Judge and Puck chang ed the character of


Am erican grap hic humor in the 1870-805. Both
were militantl y partisan wee klies - Puck
Democratic , Judge Rep ublican. Th ey raised the
artistic qu ality of American graphic humor. but in
their competition, both reached new depth s in
political abuse. Puck and Judge would
monopoliz e the market until the final years of the
century, when they were eclipsed by the
metro politan newspapers and syndicated editorial
cartoons.

Right: Joseph Keppler, Puck's fo unde r, succeeded


Nast as America 's leading cartoonist. For Puck's
cover, Februa ry 2, 1898, Keppler d rew on the
traditional alliance between the Democratic Party
and the American 'Working man.

Til E Q]JARTO PAGE 11


- continuedfrom page l the Librar y develop ed an outstanding here, a sampling of our holdings, range
Prints, unlike newspapers or body of cartoons relating to the Ameri- from rare colonial imprints to nineteenth
periodicals, were not subject to censor- can Revolution by English arti sts. In the century pulp magazin es, from fine
ship or libel laws. They obviat ed the 1980s, the library began collecting the engravings on single sheets to litho-
need for literacy. Caricatur es were sold caricatures of James Sayers and James graph s mass produced for the popular
as separate sheets in printshop s and Gillray. Through the generosity of market; there are woodcuts, the staple of
circulated in coffeehouses. In the hands Duane N. Diedrich , the Librar y has a weekly illustrat ed newspapers, and even
of arti sts like Hogarth , Gillray, tine group of original Thom as Nast original dra wings. Together, they cover
Rowlandson, and Cruikshank, the drawing s. Recently, a remarkabl e nearly 175 year s of Ameri can caricature,
cartoon became an accepted part of opportunity arose to acquire a large from the l760s to the 1930s, from Paul
political co ntroversy. number of Jack sonian and Civil War era Revere to Gluya s Williams. They are
It was this English tradition that cartoons from a collection mad e at the presented, not as art, but as evidence, as
Americans imitated. Over the years, as time these prin ts were issued. Today, the a mirror reflectin g chan ges and continu-
the Clements Libr ary collected Ameri - Clements can pro vide researchers with a ity in American history.
can caricature, it collected English broad range of graphic satire.
graphic satire as well. During the 1950s, The American caricatures presented

Right: Gluyas Williams ' cartoons are synonymous with the early years of the The New Yorker . One of the original group of artists hired
when the magazine wa s founded in i925, his elegant drawings and urbane wit projected exactly the right ima ge. American comic art
was transf ormed by Th e New Yorker. The mod ern car toon - {l picture integra ted w ith. a capti on to clinch a joke - was created for its
pag es. Williams produced a series of "in dustrial Crises" drawings f or The New Yorker. Here multimilliona ire IF. Morgan, to make
ends meet after the 1929 Stock Market crash, resorts to lending out the Morgan Library 's priceless rare books and manuscripts to
patrons for 4 cents a day.

Below: Rube Goldberg drew this caricature of himself in 1910 as his affectionate contribution to a fr iend's autograph book.

0PRf.\W.1rv G~ NO,
, MA.DAM •
A .p[t~iVR ~ ~ I /V\ CARV I NG
A BoWL 0
.&::lU f"

PAGE 12 T H E Q UARTO
o
n
I I ;.W;'P 1
1m £/I [I

INDUSTI\IAL CI\ISE.S
Owing to loss-taking, the Morgan Library is f orced to go on a circulating basis.

Drawing by Gluyas Williams, c 1933, 196 1 The New Yorker Magazine. Inc. All Rights Reserved

T il E Q1JA ItTO PAG E 13


MARY DARLY, CARICATURIST
Mary Darly. a London print maker and etcher by trade , an ingenious arti st with a wicked wit. chang ed the face of
Engli sh politi cal print". A co ntemporary of Hogarth , she lacked his genius and skill, yet her caricatures . drawn, as
she adve rtised them, in the "O'Garthian Stile ," were striking. No less so was her con tribution to the art of graphic
satire.
Mary and he r hu sband, Matt hew, were well known in the London publishin g trade of the 1750s-1760s. Th eir
shop in the Strand, oppos ite the sta lls of Hungerford Market, produced more politi cal prints than any of the others
scattered between 51. Paul' s Churchyard and Charin g Cross. Th e Darl ys were cre ative in marketi ng their political
prints. Some they sold as single shee ts, other s were coll ected into small books. They were the first to print satires
on sma ll cards. a popular innovation, muc h like the modem picture postcard . The Darl ys thriv ed on political rancor.
They had greeted George the Third 's new reign with a torrent of sc urrilous attacks on Lord Bute , advisor to the
young King and allegedl y his moth er 's lover. Mary herself had de signed and etched most of the print s they sold.
In December 1762, a notic e app eared for A Hook of Caricatures on Sixty Copp er-Plates. With the Principles of
Designing, in that Droll and pleasing Manner: by M. Darly . It was the first attempt by an Eng lish arti st to set rules
for caricature dra wing . Mary's text wa s two brief paragraph s. "Car icature is the burl esque of character, or an
exaggeration of nature, when not very pleasing ." Dra win g, she claimed, was excellent di version for yo ung lad ies
and gentlemen, "Tis the most dive rting species of designing and will certai nly kee p those that practise it out of the
hippo or Vapours,' that is, off the race track and free of melancho ly. Her rules were simple :
"Observe what sort of a line [onus the Ph iz or Carrick, you wa nt to de scribe, wither its straight lined , Externa ly
circ ular, intemaly cir cular, or Ogeed . Wh en you have found out the line, then take notice of the parts as to the ir

Bottom row, pages 14 and 15: Ma ry Darty's technique f o r drawing "carricks" shown on the left, wa." adopted by James Saye rs to caricature English. politicians
William Pitt, Lord No rth, and General Burgoyn e ( 1789).

Figure 3 Figu re 4 Figure 5

Y,.x.terna~ circular earn

"

,,'
/70,j'd. 4 1;..,,,, ~~

PAGE 14 Til E Q\JARTO


situation, projection and sinking. then by
comparing your observations with the samples in
the book. delineate your Carrick giving it the
proper touches till finished. Keep constantly
practising from this book till drawing in this
manner becomes familar & easy & is attended
with pleasure."
The remainder of Mary Darly's small book
consisted of plates illustrating her rules for
drawing "carricks," based on physiognomy -
the "science" of reading an individual' s character
from outward appearance. Her drawings
revolutionized the style of English political
prints. Rather than use emblems. symbols, or
animals, to represent public figures. artists began
to produce caricatures of public figures. James
Sayers. working in the 17805. was the first to use
Mary Darly's rules to develop a recognizable.
easily repeated recipe for an individual
politician's face. Gillray perfected the technique
a decade later.
Thanks to the genero sity of our Associates.
the Clements Library recentl y acquired a fine
copy of Mary Darly's seminal book.

Figure s 1 an d 2 (Right): Heads dra wn by Mary


Darty to illu strate the techniqu e of caricatu re.

Figure 1 Figure 2

Figure 6 Figure 7

T H E Q]JARTO PAGE IS
Above: James Gil/ray's masterpie ce, Doublures of Characters: or - Striking Resemblances in Phisiogmomy (1798) p redicts the moral det erioration of
lead ing Whig politicians , including Charles James Fox (jig. 1) and playwright Richa rd Brinsle y Sheridan (jig. 2).

CALE N DAR O F EVE NTS Culture. based in Williamsburg, Virginia , will


take place at the University of Michigan. The
April I n-Ju ne 30. Exhibit. America in
aim of the Conference is to bring together senior
/ 795: " The Preservation of our Peace.
and younger scholars of early America (to about
Foreign and Domestic "
1815) in a forum for the rich and diverse range
J\1a)' 2. Clement s Library Associates Board of work now being done in that acti ve and
Meeting. three o'clock in the afternoon, at exciting field of study. Meeting roo ms at the
the Library. lop of the Rackham Building are the site of
May 6-7. 171h Annual An n Arbor Antiquar- thirty sessions scheduled for the three day s.
ian Boo k Fair. a benefit for the Clements Friday thro ugh Sunday. while llie Clements
Library. at the Michigan Union , in the Library will host informal receptions Friday and
ballroom, 2nd floor. Sat. May 6. 5:30-9:00. Saturday evenings. Cle ments Library Associ-
Sun . May 7. I I:00-5:00 . Admis sion S3.00. ates are welcome to attend the Conference. For
program information, please call the Library
May 19. Clements Library Duplicate Sale.
(3 13) 764-2347.
closing date.
June 1, Clements Library Associate s Spring Clements Libra ry Associates Sp ring Program
Program , Lectu re, Declaratio ns of Indepen- Professor Paulin e Maier will speak on "Decla-
dence, Professor Pauline Maier, Ma ssachu- rations of Independence" at the Clements
setts Institute of Techn ology, at the Library, Associates Sprin g program. June I. at 7:30 pm .
7:30 prn. reception following. A distinguished historian of the Colonial,
June 2 ~4. First Annual Conference of the Revolutionary, and Early National periods,
Institute of Early American History and Profe ssor Maier has been on the facult y of the
Culture Massachusetts Institute of Technology since
1978. Her numerous publica tions have explored
July IO-September 8. Exhibit comme mora t-
the nature of popular politics in early America;
ing the end of World War II.
they include From Resistance to Revolution:
Colonial Radicals and the Development of
ANN OUNCEMENTS American Oppo sition to Britain: 1765-1776,
Confere nce on Ear ly American History and more recently. The Old Revolutionaries:
On June 2-4 the First Annual Conference of
Political Lives ill the Age of Samuel Adams.
the Institute of Early American History and

PAG E 16 T H E Q))ARTO