The Old Print Shop

The Key-Note of the Campaign.

  • ARTIST: Thomas Nast

  • PUBLISHER: Published by Harper's Weekly. September 28, 1873.

  • MEDIUM: Wood engraving,

    DATE: 1872.

  • EDITION SIZE: Image size 13 1/8 x 20 1/4" (33.3 x 51.3 cm).

  • DESCRIPTION: A political cartoon poking fun at the Democratic Party and it's supporters. They look disgruntled and worried as they near the presidential election. This was due to the nomination of Horace Greeley earlier that year. His policies and history were questionable to many, but most confounding was his lack of political knowledge. This aspect is played upon with the posters on the wall. Each hold a series of quotes from the nominee and the New York Tribune, which he edited, and are entitled "What H.G. Knows about...." This was a popular theme used by the artist, Thomas Nast, to attack the candidate. In 1871 Greeley published a book entitled "What I know about farming," but the publication was based on childhood memories rather than actual practice. So it became the perfect fodder to show his ignorance in politics. Furthering the irony is that the quote all show Greeley's distaste for the Democratic party, yet he was running under their banner. <br><br> In the crowd of supporters is Carl Shurz, who is depicted playing the piano with a vexed expression. He was the founder of the Liberal Republican party, which had allied itself with the Democrats in hopes of thwarting Ulysses S. Grant, the Republican incumbent. He was just as displeased with Greeley's nomination as the Democrats, but was doing his best to push things forward. His sheet music reads "Swallowing the Greeley Boiled Crow pill. Music by C. Schurz. Chorus: We will sing him through the campaign if it KILLS us. $ Office. Office." Just off center, to the left, is Boss Tweed, the former head of Tammany Hall. He had been ousted the year before for corruption and the embezzlement. Standing in the back, just beyond him, is a man wearing and labeled "K.K" with a skull and crossbones. This was a reference to the K.K.K. and other white supremacist groups who supported the Democrats in the South.


  • CONDITION: .Good condition, save a small stain within the image.