Thursday, May 3, 2012

Overworked Uncle Sam

I ran across this cartoon by Charles Lewis "Bart" Bartholomew for the April 9, 1898 Minneapolis Journal the other day:
Uncle Sam to the cartoonists of the country–Don't you think, boys, you could give me a day off? I begin to feel as if I had been worked overtime by you fellows of late.

Despite some early cartoons lampooning the eagerness to go to war of Randolph Hearst and company, Bart was by this time regularly drawing jingoistic cartoons lauding America's taking up arms to aid "Starving Cuba" and questioning the intentions of Spanish diplomatic attempts to head off the war. So Bart – standing with his back to us next to his signature gopher, or chipmunk, or whatever that animal is supposed to be – was drawing Uncle Sam (or crowing bald eagles) nearly every day.

The tall cartoonist just to Bart's right must be the Minneapolis Tribune's Rowland Claude Bowman, who usually included in his cartoons that dog between his legs.

Other cartoonists in the cartoon are identified with their respective newspapers. From left to right: The Chicago Record, ?, New York Journal (standing), New York Herald (seated), Examiner San Francisco (standing), Chicago Inter Ocean (crouching), and World. Sorry, I just can't read that second fellow.

I can postulate names for the New Yorkers in this cartoon. Homer Davenport was cartoonist for the New York Journal. William A. Rogers was cartoonist for the New York Herald. The cartoonists for the (New York) World included Richard Outcault (in a self-caricature on page 71 of Stephen Hess and Sandy Northrop's American Political Cartoons, Outcault has dark shaggy hair, glasses, and an upturned moustache) and Walt McDougall.

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