|"The Intrusive 'Leadsman'" by Edward T. Reed in Sunday Evening Telegraph, London, February, 1917|
President Woodrow Wilson: "Reck'n it looks mighty like as if we're gett'n' vu-rry near harbor. Guess I'll start heaving the lead a bit, anyways."For those of you who aren't old-timey sailors, a leadsman uses a block of lead attached to a rope to determine the depth of water, called "sounding."
Lloyd George: "My good man, it's not the slightest use your messing about with that lead! WE know the port WE'RE making for perfectly well, and shan't need YOUR assistance."
If it's rather curious that Prime Minister Lloyd George still feels that he shan't need Wilson's assistance, he'll welcome it quite soon enough. The point that Reed is trying to make is that Lloyd George is committed to total victory over Germany, while Wilson would be happy with achieving a more modest truce.
In fact, thanks to the German resumption of "unrestricted submarine warfare" at sea, the Wilson administration was moving closer and closer to joining the Allies. Keeping to a nautical theme, Philly cartoonist Bill Sykes aims his criticism at the U.S. Congress, where there was still reluctance to commit to the war in Europe.
|"Goner Let the Water Out, By Heck!" by Wm. Sykes in Philadelphia Evening Ledger, February 26, 1917|
On March 1, the Wilson administration revealed to the American public the Zimmerman telegram, in which the German Foreign Secretary urged Mexico to declare war on the U.S., if the U.S. abandoned neutrality in the European war. In return for keeping the U.S. preoccupied in its own hemisphere, Germany promised to support returning Texas, Arizona and New Mexico to Mexico.
The trademark in this cartoon is a bit difficult to read; it says "War Plot / Made in Germany."
|"Do You See That Trademark?" by Wm. F. Hanny in St. Joseph (Mo.) News Dispatch, March 2, 1917|
|"Long Distance—Europe on the Wire" by Edward S. "Ted" Brown in Chicago Daily News, February/March, 1917|
|"An Annoying Interruption" by Ted Brown in Chicago Daily News, March 15, 1917|
From the other side, here's a German view of the American president, from the cover of the Berlin satirical magazine Lustige Blätter:
|"Doppelzüngig" by Carl O. Petersen for Lustige Blätter, Berlin, February 26, 1917|
So anyway, that's where we stood as Woodrow Wilson settled in for the Inauguration of his second term on March 5, 1917 (the traditional date of March 4 falling on a Sunday that year).
|"Beginning His Second Volume" by Wm. F. Hanny in St. Joseph News Dispatch, March 5, 1917|