Saturday, December 28, 2019

Dashing Through to 1920, Part 2

Soloback Saturday devotes today's installment to a single cartoon from December, 1919.
"The Honorable Mentionables for President, Subject to Revision" by John T. McCutcheon in Chicago Tribune, December 21, 1919
John T. McCutcheon's tour de force on the 1920 presidential race uses nearly the entire alphabet to list all the potential candidates. (He couldn't come up with anything for the letter Q, and apparently overlooked I. The ninth letter of the alphabet is out of order, and I see no marcher holding it.) Some of the meter doesn't quite span well; but on the other hand, the cartoon is the earliest one I've come across to include the name of the eventual Democratic nominee.

But I'm still not going to tell you who he was yet.

The pages of broadsheet newspapers were much larger then than those of any U.S. newspaper today, allowing McCutcheon's cartoon approximately 6" x 8" of front page real estate. Yet I suspect that he might have wished to trade his spot that Sunday for Frank O. King's full page on the front of of the editorial section.

Since you may not have 6" x 8" of screen space to read the cartoon, and it has been nearly impossible to clean this image enough to be as legible as I'd like it to be, here's McCutcheon's poetry in full:
A is for Allen of Kansas, a man with considerable pep.
B is for Baker and Bryan, same party, but quite out of step.
C is for Cox and for Coolidge, Champ Clark, former Speaker, you know.
D is for Dawes, Daniels, Denby, Davis of Morgan and Co.
E is for Everyone mentioned whose name we've completely forgot.
F is Fair Field and No Favor, and all that sort of rot.
G is Goodrich and Gerard, both Jameses, W. and P.
H is for Harding and Hoover; you've heard all about Herbert C.
J is for Senator Johnson; the covenant pleases him not.
K is for Kenyon and Kellogg; their chances are not very hot.
L is for Governor Louden; Illinois is loud in his praise;
He's willing to move to the White House; the job of President pays.
M is for William A. MacAdoo, Vice President Marshall as well.
N is for No One Yet Mentioned, but of course, you never can tell.
O is for Orators plenty; they'll talk till you're totally deaf.
P  is for Poindexter and Palmer, and Pershing of the grand A.E.F.
R. is for Root, Reds and Radicals, the opposite ends of the pole.
S is for one who is known as the Hon. Gov. Sproul.
T is for Taft, William Howard; he served in the White House before;
He liked it while he was the tenant, and would probably like it some more.
U is for Senator Underwood, not supposed to be out for the place.
V is for Votes that will settle which candidate wins in the race.
W is for Wood and for Woodrow; their figures loom big in the sky.
W is also for Watson, who is said to be willing to try.
X is for X-candidate Hughes; he used to run four years ago.
Y is for Yank, both doughboy and gob; he'll play a big part in the show.
Z is for Zero, the hour next June when all of the world will know.
Ah, well. I did say that there would be only one cartoon this week, but since you've been such a good boy and/or girl, I'll throw in a second one about the Democratic presidential hopefuls.
"The Snow Man" by Clifford Berryman in Washington Evening Star, December 29, 1919
And yes, the eventual nominee is in here, too.

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