Friday, December 10, 2010

R.C. Bowman's 1900 Cartoons: Minnesota Governors

In continuing celebration of Minnesota's certification at long last of the election of Mark Dayton as governor, here are a couple cartoons from The Minneapolis Tribune Cartoon Book for 1901: Being a Collection of Over One Hundred Cartoons by R.C. Bowman about the 1900 gubernatorial election.

Minnesota G.O.P.: "You want to watch out, now. I got lost in this pass two years ago."
Cap. Van Sant (the new guide): "Well, you know I wasn't on the job then."

Republican Samuel R. Van Sant narrowly won the 1900 gubernatorial election after being denied his party's nomination in two previous elections. He beat out the incumbent governor, John Lind (the mountain in the above cartoon).

Swedish-born Lind started out his political career as a Republican, appointed by President James Garfield to a position in the U.S. Land Office and then being elected to Congress from Minnesota. Due to differences with conservative Republicans, he switched to the Democratic party, losing the 1896 gubernatorial election but winning the 1898 race -- the first Democrat elected governor of Minnesota in 50 years.

Minnesota G.O.P.: "Thunder, man! That transfer's no good; it's two years old."

I can't say whether this is just the way cartoonist R.C. Bowman saw Lind, or whether this is an example of why you can't cite Wikipedia as a primary reference, but Bowman's 1900 cartoons of John Lind sure look a lot older than what Wikipedia says is a 1899 photo of Lind.

Lind would have been 56 years old in 1900, while Bowman was 30. Perhaps Bowman thought 56 was ancient; but Lind would outlive Bowman by 27 years.

No comments:

Post a Comment