David Claypool Johnston
Richard Fenton Outcault
John T. McCutcheon
Clarence Daniel Batchelor
Franklin Osborne Alexander
Roy Braxton Justus
Arthur B. Poinier
Read the Article from
the Syracuse Record
Thomas Nast (1840-1902)
"To a greater degree than any other American caricaturist, Nast
broadened the graphic vocabulary of the political cartoonist by popularizing
such symbols as Uncle Sam, the Democratic donkey, the Republican elephant,
and the Tammany tiger. Truly Nast was the father of American cartooning,
for he expanded its scope and established the conventions that brought
the art to maturity" (J. Chal Vinson, Thomas Nast: Political Cartoonist
[Athens, Georgia: University of Georgia Press, 1967]).
portrait of Thomas Nast after a photograph by Sarony of New York.
drawing by Thomas Nast entitled A Tammany Burr. The political
corruption that gripped New York City between 1865 and 1872 at the
hands of William Marcy Tweed and his Tammany Hall organization was
perhaps the greatest inspiration for the work of Thomas Nast. Here
the caricature of Tweed is offering chestnuts or bribes in the form
of money, jobs, and liquor to secure the votes needed to maintain
his highly developed system of graft.
Meridian of Life from "Shakespeare's Voyage of Life"
in Nast's Almanac for 1872. The figure is none other than
William Marcy Tweed portrayed as a corrupt judge accepting bribes
behind his back. Nast's continual attack upon Tweed and his Tammany
Hall machine was a significant factor in the collapse of Tweed's
regime in New York by 1872.
original drawing by Thomas Nast. The artist depicts himself with
a suitcase before a grinning government dome, as he appears to reach
straight through an empty pocket in the presence of many outstretched
hands. On the back of the drawing, there is the enigmatic statement
that "Nast leaves and the rest got left." This may be
the artist's bitter comment upon his decline in popularity at the
end of his career.
This exhibition has been generously supported by the
College of Arts and Sciences and the Photo and Imaging Center
Collections Research Center
Syracuse University Library
Syracuse, NY 13244
June 09, 2012 12:35 PM