SFH – (for the week of 12/6 – 12/12) –
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This cartoon which reads ‘Boosting Him Up’ was published in the 1920’s by Morgan in the Philadelphia Inquirer. This was one of the many political cartoons of the time that illustrated that striking would only help the spread of anarchy. The ‘Red Scare’ refers to the fear of communism in the United States in the 1920’s, although this fear was wide spread across the nation anarchists or communists in the United States in 1920 represented only 0.1% of the overall population. The fear of communism increased when a series of strikes occurred in 1919. The police of Boston when on strike and 100,000 of the steel and coal workers did likewise, resultantly the anarchists and communists received the blame. The cartoon shows an individual being hoisted up a flag pole by Bolshevik propaganda (a group of social democratic in regularly blamed for encouraging anarchy and communism in the United States); many thought that the strikes common in factory towns were initiated by those responsible for Bolshevik Propaganda. During the Red Scare of 1919-1920 Americans became suspicious that they might fall victim to a communist plot to take over the country. Hence the man with the anarchy fame approaching the flag of the United States of America in the cartoon. The main method that workers unions used to create fair labor agreements were striking and collective bargaining, which came to be seen as tools of socialists and anarchists. As a result labor unions were frowned upon and dwindled in number and size as compared to the Gilded Age. Several hundred Americans who were affiliated with the Communist and Socialist parties were arrested, as were labor organizers and others who criticized the United States government.

ADB (week of 12/6-12/12) -
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In E.W. Gustin’s cartoon “Election Day!”, located in the Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division in Washington, D.C., and published in 1909, Gustin depicts an anti-suffrage sentiment through a reversal of husband and wife familial roles. The woman, donning a suit-looking overcoat and top hat, is going out to vote, while the man is home with the children, both of whom are crying, and the cat, who looks distressed (not to mention the husband himself). In 1887, the splintered women’s rights movement (or at least a large portion of it) merged together to create the National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA). Important suffragist figures, such as Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Alice Paul, and Lucy Burns, were either already a part of the NAWSA upon its inception or joined it later; these women proved instrumental in the continued lobbying for women’s right to vote. Opposition in the late 19th century and early 20th had remained with the male justification that women should not get “mucked up” in politics, that their place was at home, tending to the household and the children, and that men were much more intelligent than women.

In the illustration, the traditional female and male roles of the era are reversed: the man stays home with the house and children while the woman leaves to vote. The main idea of Gustin’s cartoon is that women voting will upset the “balance of nature” and that the man, who usually provides for the family, will have to take up more of the “wifely” duties now that women can vote. The wife’s expression is one of absolutely no sympathy, as if she’s thinking that he’s finally getting a taste of his own medicine, so to speak. The wife’s overcoat, in combination with the apron-like “skirt” of the man, is a subtle, yet clear, way in which Gustin reveals the complete switching of roles. The crying babies and the anxious cat reveal male tensions to female suffrage, in particular feelings that if women were given the right to vote (in a larger sense, enter the public arena), more of the home responsibilities would fall to the men (the man’s face clearly shows this anxiety). This cartoon is important because it illustrates how anti-suffragists were negatively spinning the suffragist agenda, as well as that the motivation for anti-suffrage toward women was male pride and their desire to retain the established “spheres of influence” of men and women. Gustin’s audience for this cartoon was most likely those already against female suffrage (the cartoon will support their beliefs) and those who were on the fence about the suffrage movement (the cartoon would show undecided men their reality if women gained the vote).

This cartoon, created by Lou Rogers, shows the pessimistic views towards the woman's suffrage movement. Rogers clearly believes that women should not be pushing for suffrage as it will burden them and society. This was a common viewpoint in the 1920's. Suffragettes, such as Alice Paul, lead women in a fight for the right to vote in the 20's, especially disturbed that Wilson would fight for freedom in Europe (WWI) without first granting it at home. Political cartoons were spread widely through newspapers in order to reach all audiences, even those who could not read. Women had been campaigning for suffrage since the Gilded Age at the Seneca Falls Convention, but in the 20's, the formation of the NWP added a new, fiery drive for woman's rights. Men, however, believed that a woman's place was at home and that politics would only burden women who had children to raise and other "important" duties to fulfill. The woman in this cartoon appears to be entangled by ropes which read, "Politics is no place for women." This symbolizes the primary objection to a suffrage with a literal representation of a woman being tied down by political burdens. This material was created to increase anti-suffrage sentiments among men and Congress, which already did not favor woman's rights. It would also reach women as a warning that they would not be happy and carefree if bound by political obligations. It was not a ground breaking image, but part of a stream of images that flooded the US in order to try and stop the woman's suffrage movement.

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The cartoon displayed above, “Woman’s Vote,” was created by William H. Walker in 1920. The author was a man who probably did not think highly of women. Walker was satirizing how the great rivalry between the Democratic and Republican Parties evolved during the 1920 election, with the involvement of the nationwide female vote, by comparing it to a lover’s triangle, a further insult to women being portrayed as easily wooed and malleable. In this cartoon, the Democratic Party is represented by a donkey who seems to have a slight advantage over the Republican party Elephant, while the female vote is represented by a beautiful woman who seems to have questionable repute since she is entertaining two men at once in her home. Although this cartoon is displaying the wooing of women voters, it is also discussing the more universal topic of female intellect and inferiority. The occasion of this cartoon is very important; this was published for the upcoming election when women would be constitutionally allowed to vote for the first time. Though neither party showed overwhelming support for the 19th Amendment, after its passing, both Parties were quick to take advantage of the new opportunity that had afforded itself. This material was produced to help show the controversy that surrounded the direction women would vote in. The art depicted would target American female voters and caution them to not be so easily persuaded, while also admonishing the overt and uncouth Republican and Democratic behavior in their blatant appeals to female voters.

Wiki entry for the week ending 1/9/11
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This cartoon was created by Rollin Kirby, a prominent political cartoonist in the early to middle twentieth century. Kirby was awarded the first Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartoons with the work shown above, “On the Road to Moscow.” Kirby was against US isolationism and also against the Communist threat in Russia. Kirby wrote for different prominent papers in New York City such as the New York World and the New York Sun. This cartoon was drawn in New York, New York in 1922. Coming off the big Red Scare in 1919 and 1920, Americans were wary of anything tangentially related to Communism. Thus when the topic of Communism was brought up with such vivid imagery, the skeleton and chained men and women, Americans would lather their own prejudices regarding Communism onto the material presented. Most Americans who would see this cartoon would see it in their morning paper. The images that would haunt US citizens so were the chains binding the line of people together and the skeleton leading the way. The skeleton represents death and misery as well as Communism. The chains represent the tyrannical Communist government. Kirby produced this specific work for the New York World. The New York World was a newspaper that had a reputation for manipulating public opinion with to stir up drama. This cartoon may not actually represent what Communism was really like in Russia, as much as how Americans perceived it. Men and women who did not have a good understanding of what was happening in Europe or Russia would be most influenced by this anti-communist propaganda. Kirby's goal in making this cartoon was to vilify Communism and the Russian government. Kirby associates the Communist way of life with oppression and imprisonment. Works like this would have a part in the enormously anti-communist attitudes in American society.
LM - Political Cartoon
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Released by the Anti-Saloon League in 1922, this political cartoon seeks to damage public regrets about implementing the Noble Experiment. This cartoon demonizes the anti-Prohibition movement, associating booze production closely with Germans. The Hun Rule Association is depicted as beer kegs; the kegs provoke the idea that beer promotes German domination. To be continued...

Will E. Chapin drew this cartoon for the St. Louis Star, and it implied that he believed that the last steps of the women’s suffrage movement were shown to be the most difficult in that the 19th Amendment had been passed by Congress but not yet ratified. This cartoon was published in Star March 27, 1920 during the time between the 19th Amendment’s passing June 4, 1919 and its ratification August 18, 1920. As it was published during this time, it was meant to represent the suffragist’s struggle at the end of their struggle for the 19th Amendment. It was originally published in Star in St. Louis, so readers in St. Louis would have read this cartoon first. This political cartoon referenced the suffragist movement in its final steps to make the 19th Amendment a reality through its ratification. Suffragists had campaigned for and devoted themselves to national suffrage for many years; some of them risking their well being to do so. Suffragists had worked very hard, and in saying that getting the 19th Amendment ratified was the hardest, Chapin credited as being a very difficult process. The person depicted was a woman and the tool she had in her hand was labeled ‘ratification’ and her dress was labeled ‘national suffrage’, so she should be recognized as a suffragist working for ratification. This cartoon was created for Star, and it was meant for suffragists and congressmen as they were involved in the referenced situation. Likewise, it was them who would have been influenced by the sketch as they are involved in the real situation it was based on. Suffragists may have been insulted as they were depicted as looking caught and frazzled, even though their effort does not need to be seen as a negative. This cartoon was produced to depict the circumstances of the national suffrage movement at the time. It conveyed that even though the suffragists were working hard, they were having trouble achieving their final goal since the bill had yet to be ratified. This particular cartoon was specific to the events during the time of its creation. Although suffragists were trying their best to make national suffrage a reality, Congress’ ratification was still hard to accomplish. This was a significant cartoon as it referenced an important movement in American history, the suffrage movement. It implied that suffragists were failing since it had not been ratified. This political cartoon could have influenced suffragists or congressmen during this time.

ADB (week of 1/3 - 1/9) -
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This cartoon appeared in the New York Evening World on January 17th, 1920, under copyright by the Press Publishing Company. It depicts a large eagle (the US government) throwing out the “Reds” (communists, socialists, anarchists, etc.) from its nest (the nation). In other words, it is a vivid description of the national mood (if not hysteria) during the First Red Scare. During World War I, in the 1917 Russian Revolution, Russia came under the control of Vladimir Lenin, a revolutionary Marxist who promised to take the Motherland out of the war, which was very unpopular among the people. After World War I, over 4,000 strikes occurred, mostly due to the fact that workers’ pay hadn’t stayed consistent with increasing market prices. With no other arguments to defend themselves, many business owners labeled these strikers as Bolsheviks or Communists. The US populace had been so hypnotized by the Creel Committee’s propaganda during World War I that they were more susceptible to believe these exaggerations or outright lies. Since the Creel Committee had been disbanded after the War, there was no one to “spin” the United States back to a more worldly view. As a result, a feeling arose that a Russian Revolution in America was imminent, and the Red Scare was born.
The main idea of this cartoon is North America’s desire to rid itself of any “Reds”, whether real or suspected. The eagle represents two main concepts: one, it is the mood of the populace, which was fear of the “destruction of American society” by the infiltrating Reds; two, it represents the swift and powerful nature of the Palmer Raids, which basically threw out suspected “Reds” and foisted them on other countries to deal with. The “emotion” of this forcefulness could be interpreted to be the anger depicted on the eagle’s face as it expunges Reds from its nest. This cartoon is important because it reveals the fervor with which the United States desired to rid itself of any Communist or other extreme left-wing political activists; many of the suspected “Commies” were immigrants, primarily Eastern Europeans, which also reflects a continuing trend of blatant racism in the USA. This cartoon’s primary audience could go either way: the cartoon could be a subtle satire or mockery of the hysterical nature of the Red Scare, and therefore apply to sympathetic immigrants or other American citizens who saw through the hysteria; or it could simply be more anti-Red propaganda, in which case it would be directed at most of America’s population who sought to prevent a Russian Revolution in North America.

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KEO- This cartoon was drawn by Rollin Kirby and it appeared in New York World on January 17th, 1920. It was meant to criticize the Prohibition movement and it features the character “Mr. Dry” who became the symbol of the Prohibition Era. Kirby observed the hypocrisy of the alcohol ban and mocked it in his cartoons. The Volstead Act was passed in 1919 and it set the starting date for nationwide prohibition for January 17th 1920, which was the earliest date allowed by the 18th Amendment, and also the day this cartoon was published. At this time, prohibition was a relevant issue that was enthusiastically embraced by the cartoonist community. Rollin Kirby’s anti-Prohibition cartoons were preceded by those of Joseph Keppler who featured a figure in his cartoons called “Old Man Prohibition.” Kirby’s cartoons usually drew his audience’s focus to one important symbolic figure and in this case it was Mr. Dry. The character Mr. Dry was used in many of his works and he was always depicted as a dark and severe killjoy with a narrow mind who represented everything that was bad about prohibition. The character was meant to bring down the Volstead Act and it was largely thought that he had effectively laughed the issue to death. This cartoon emphasizes the killjoy aspect of the Prohibition movement by showing Mr. Dry promoting the goodness of drinking water as opposed to alcohol and he says, “Now then, all together, ‘My country ‘tis of thee’” to imply that being “dry” is being patriotic. Kirby’s depiction of Mr. Dry expresses his belief that prohibition is unnecessary and he clearly mocks its supporters as stuffy killjoys. He appeals to an audience of people who resented the killjoy aspects of prohibition, but also to those who saw alcohol as a product that could be used and appreciated without guilt. This cartoon is significant in that it is considered one of the most enduring symbols of the Prohibition movement in the US. The Mr. Dry character became a cartooning icon that was adopted by multiple cartoonists in an effort to criticize prohibition. This, and Kirby’s other cartoons of the same nature, largely contributed to the anti-prohibition movement and played an important role in bringing it to an end.

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AMB--This cartoon was originally published in The Woman Patriot, an Anti-Suffragist newspaper. It was authored by conservative women who were against the the 19th Amendment, as well as other liberal reforms. The cartoon was published just after the Amendment was ratified, making a statement as to the effects of the Amendment on Anti-Suffragist political supporters. It was published to argue that women should not have the legal right to vote because it would have severe social and political implications. It shows not only the Anti-Suffragists’ disagreement with women’s suffrage, but also their frustration that a lack of support for women’s suffrage could cause the downfall of their supporter’s political careers.
During the 1920s, there were many people in support of suffrage, but also very many who were against it. Many of those who were against it believed that women should not be involved in government or politics, and that it would practically be defying nature for them to do so. This may explain why it is a woman who holds the “political sifter;” it represents the control that the Anti-Suffragists believed that women should not have. The cartoon was created by the Anti-Suffragists for the people of the Washington, D.C. area. This was significant because it would have been possible for many different politicians to see this magazine, and for them to have been influenced by its message. Because the cartoon depicts individual Congressmen, it is likely that these men were the original intended audience. It was intended to make those who voted for the Suffrage Amendment to realize that they had made a big mistake by giving women the vote. The Anti-Suffragists, after seeing this cartoon, would have feared for their future careers because with the right to vote, women would have power against them.
The cartoon was produced after the ratification of the 19th Amendment to show the Pro-Suffrage Congressmen the severity of their decision. It displays both the political disruption that could result from women voting, as well as potential changes in social status as women were given power over men.
This material is significant because it presents a contrary side to the Women’s Suffrage debate, and shows that the viewpoint that today is widely taken for granted as “correct” actually had opponents in the twenties. At the time, the Anti-Suffragists’ argument would have seemed valid to much of the American populace. If it was effective, this cartoon should have led some people to doubt the decision to give women the right to vote.

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This cartoon was drawn by Lute Pease for the Newark News. Known as somewhat of a moderate, Pease was against the Sedition Legislation of the 20s which he felt was overkill. The Newark News, who commissioned this cartoon, supported Pease’s stance on this issue. In 1920 when this cartoon was published, congress radically opposed immigration and passed laws to restrict the amount of immigrants that could enter the United States. Pease mocks this stance by harshly depicting this legislation. Audiences originally encountered this material in an article in the Newark News and other journals such as the Literary Digest. The larger issue that this cartoon speaks to is the extreme reaction to a change in immigration to the United States. America had always traditionally reacted harshly to immigration and the reaction in the 20s was part of a long history of xenophobia. In the picture, the fly on the face symbolizes the problems with the “reds” and immigration. The sledgehammer symbolizes the legislation that was passed in this era. This cartoon was published for the average American reader. People who feel similarly about the immigration legislation are likely to agree with the stance taken in this cartoon. People who dislike Pease’s stance are likely to be upset with this cartoon. This article was produced in order to help illuminate the point that the Sedition Legislation was too strong and needed to be toned down. Pease probably thinks that the U.S. should take a more moderate stance on immigration. The main idea of this article is that immigration was a problem that needed to be dealt with, however the government did more harm in trying to solve it than necessary. This material is important because it represents the problems of this era that the government created. This cartoon helped illustrate the problems of this era that were created by the government.

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This cartoon, “He’s Always Seeing Things,” was created by Carey Orr for the Chicago Tribune. Orr had drawn cartoons for the Nashville Tennessean before working for the Chicago Tribune, and he later won the Pulitzer Prize for his work.

“He’s Always Seeing Things” was first published in July 1925, during the trial of John T. Scopes for teaching evolution in violation of Tennessee law. William Jennings Bryan, who volunteered as the prosecution attorney, was a fundamentalist who believed that Book of Genesis literally described the creation of the world and therefore viewed Darwin’s theory of evolution as a threat to religious beliefs. The trial became a battleground between Bryan and Darrow, who defended Scopes and evolution, and therefore drew the nation into a cultural conflict between science and religion.

In this cartoon, William Jennings Bryan is depicted as Don Quixote, an idealistic knight who believes that he is on a crusade to save the world from supposed evils. In one of the most famous scenes from the story, Don Quixote mistakes windmills for giants and attacks them. By depicting Bryan as Don Quixote, evolutionary theory as the windmill, and Tennessee law as the lance with which Bryan charges, Orr suggests that Bryan’s struggle against evolution, although well intentioned, is misguided and therefore doomed to failure.

This cartoon would have been first encountered by readers in Chicago. Because most urban Americans during the 1920s accepted evolution, Chicagoans would likely focus on the misguided nature of Bryan’s “attack.” In contrast, rural Americans, who generally opposed the teaching of evolution, might interpret this cartoon as Bryan’s struggle against modernism and attempt to revive older and purer values (just as Don Quixote tried to revive knightly chivalry).

This material was produced during John Scopes’ trial to criticize Bryan’s stance on evolution. Although Orr admits that Bryan believes his struggle to be noble, the name of the cartoon (“He’s Always Seeing Things”) implies that Bryan sees evolution as more of a threat than it really is. Orr therefore suggests that viewers do not overreact to evolutionary theory and modernism so they do not join the quixotic fundamentalist movement.

By comparing Bryan to Don Quixote, Orr also implies that many will always have a nostalgic yearning for the past in spite of the benefits of the present (symbolized by the technological advance of the windmill). Thus, this cartoon could have convinced viewers that evolution would inevitably triumph over fundamentalism and that any attempt to support fundamentalism, despite its noble appearance, was in fact foolish.


Drawn by Lute Pease for Newark Evening News in 1920, "Swat the Fly" depicts the overzealous nature of the Sedition Act of 1918. This cartoon was published amidst the "Red Scare" in the United States, which is considered as one of the causes of the Sedition Acts. Many citizens believed sedition legislation was necessary but it should not be so pervasive that it causes more harm than good. For instance, many of the laws put forth by the Sedition Act often caused innocent immigrants to be arrested or deported. This was a result of the fact that it was nearly impossible to effectively identify "red" immigrants compared to normal immigrants. Thus, many innocent people suffered from the "too drastic sedition legislation". Pease shared his opinion about the unnecessary intensity of the Sedition Acts with the majority of Americans including members of the government, which is reflected by the fact that the Sedition Act was repealed only two years after becoming law. The Act was generally regarded as something with good intentions that fell short of its goal due to its primary weakness: It was too difficult to correctly enforce for it to be effective. Although the Sedition Act was unsuccessful, it is praised for identifying the need to control immigration, which resulted in less extreme yet more effective immigrant legislation in the future. Therefore despite the notion that the Sedition Act of 1918 is regarded as an utter failure that caused more harm than good, it still managed to influence the progress of the United States in a positive way by serving as the unrefined precursor of later immigrant legislation.

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This cartoon, entitled “Child Labor,” was drawn by Robert Minor, a leader of the American Communist Party, and published in the Comintern-associated newspaper, the Daily Worker. The piece was published on December 22, 1924, after the Bolshevik Revolution and rise of communism in Russia. Many Americans, such as Minor, supported Communist philosophies, and attempted to spread them in the United States, through outlets such as the Daily Worker. Child labor is the issue being covered in this particular cartoon, and this falls under the category of worker’s rights and powers, which are some of the main facets of communism. In 1924, the Child Labor Amendment was proposed to Congress, and passed by the House of Representative and the Senate in the middle of that year. This cartoon further depicts the fiendish institution of child labor in an attempt to alter the Constitution by making more States ratify the revision. Unfortunately, this cartoon would not have reached out to a large audience, because it was in a newspaper that mostly catered to communists, who made up a small percentage of the United States population, and were less likely to be found in states that did not have large urban areas with disillusioned workers. In the drawing, a large man is consuming a child, which is an image that most Americans would be bothered by. A small girl is about to be dropped onto the man’s extended tongue, and another is reaching out to be saved just before falling down the throat. The practice of forcing work upon children is equated in this comic to eating them, and both acts benefit a fat, wealthy adult. Child labor is portrayed as evil, and Minor’s depiction, along with others, was successful in removing legality from the convention. The idea that child work was terrible certainly did not specifically relate to communist beliefs, as most Americans were opposed to it by the 1920s, long after the Industrial Revolution had ended.

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The cartoon displayed above was created by John Cassel in 1920 in the New York World, a daily newspaper that circulated mainly in urban areas. The author is most likely in support of the actions being taken during the Red Scare, due to the Eagle being portrayed in a positive manner. The portrayal of the eagle throwing the Bolsheviks out of the nest shows that the actions enforcers are taking keep America safe. Additionally, the New York World is known for some Yellow Journalism that leaned favorably toward the United States. The author is displaying the majestic bald-headed eagle, symbolizing the American government, protecting the nest which is the United States. The Eagle is attempting to keep the United States safe from any communists. During this time Palmer Raids were at their heights and many individuals were being arrested and deported for being a suspected Bolshevik. Businesses were vandalized of suspected individuals and the enforcers searched and apprehended individuals without warrants. The cartoon represents a purging within America for the better as evil Bolsheviks are being thrown out. The art depicted would target individuals who are curious about the actions of the government during this time of crisis in the United States. This cartoon would provide reassurance to the citizens of the United States and would also bestow a sense of confidence. This self-reliance would be derived from the eagle doing its job of protecting its home. Additionally, the text shown at the bottom “CLEANING THE NEST!” would provide clarification for those who misinterpreted the picture in a negative connotation. Just as the Eagle is simply making the nest a better place to inhabit, the government is making the United States a more suitable place for its citizens. The New York World published similar cartoons throughout the Red Scare.

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“He gives aid and comfort to the enemies of society” was created by John T. McCutcheon. It was published in the Chicago Tribune on September 27, 1919. This cartoon was made just a little while after the Boston Police Strike started on September 9, 1919 in response to this huge event that had occurred. During World War I strikes were banned and throughout the war wages did not rise but prices of goods did. After the war many people working different jobs felt that they were being underpayed, especially the police. The police participated in a strike in order to get higher wages, less working hours, be paid for all hours worked, and a right to unionize. This cartoon was probably made for the general public and for the government. It was made for the public in order to scare them into helping the police get their pay raises and for the government to give them their raise. It was really important to have the police on duty to protect the public. If they were striking, violence, crime, and disorder would fill the city. Especially during the time of the red scare, the thought of Bolsheviks and communists scared the citizens. If the police were on strike at this time it caused the public to be even more afraid. Due to the scared public the police eventually received a raise, because it was very important to have someone to protect the city.


J.R.C.- Victor Hugo, a popular cartoonist of the twenties, created this material for the Chicago Tribune. Hugo’s cartoons contain a reoccurring symbol of an octopus as a symbol of corruption. This cartoon was created in a very serious manner, due to the fact that Chicago, around the time of publication, was split in a civil war fueled by gangs. Timing in this regard made this cartoon a fairly laughable topic. Prohibition was a hot topic of the twenties and due to the fact that the North and Southside gangs took a prominent illegal role in Chicago, this material was viewed to be much less effective. In a caption underneath the cartoon, Hugo states, “The tentacles of the Devil Fish cannot be destroyed unless the HEAD, the source of their sustaining power, is destroyed,” setting the foundation for the symbolic role of the octopus and its worded tentacles. The knife stabbing “saloons” in the head is labeled “vote” depicting Hugo’s beliefs that the only way the devilfish will be killed is by voting towards prohibition. This material was meant to push one to vote towards prohibition as well.