Meanwhile, Across The Pond, Political Cartoons Packing A Heckish Punch

JPK Huson 1863

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
Feb 14, 2012
Location
Central Pennsylvania
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Punch magazine, 1861. Brits rubbing it in a little.

First, no shooting the proverbial messenger. Even proverbially.

Punch, British publication, the most barbed weaponry employed against all-things-politics ( and a lot which were not ) was a magazine with an astonishing run. Founded in 1841, final issue was somewhere around 1996. We do love our humor and Punch satire set the stage, really, for political cartoonists to keep those quills sharpened. Although Wiki claims it to have been most influential in the decade following its first issue you'd have to question that- a run of 155 years wouldn't indicate 145 of those were exactly winding down.
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One of Punch's best loved, most well-known illustrator's, John Leech was not a fan of ours- meaning America. As things heated up on this side of The Pond it seems unsurprising he'd jump in with both ink pots. Again- I didn't contribute these nor the article attached, written by yet another Punch contributor. You can see whence came the name. They sure didn't pull any.

Humorists, remember.
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Abe and Jefferson make frequent appearances-
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They used the awful language over here as part of some of the most lacerating commentary, too.
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And please, let's not devolve into what and who England supported- Punch was a world unto itself and had plenty to say about the government and conditions there, too. You simply cannot say " Well the British.... " while scooping the folks at Punch into the conversation. No one was safe, and shouldn't have been.

Peek at what Punch had to say about living conditions of poor people in the UK and the profiteers who considered them in the way - of profits.
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Waterloo50

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Forum Host
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It’s difficult to tell how many of the civil war Punch cartoons reflected true British political attitudes. Having seen quite a number of punch cartoons from the civil war period, it would appear that there were lots of jokes aimed at freed black slaves, one also gets the impression that the British were laughing at the complete turmoil caused by the war, a kind of, you can have your war but don’t mess with us attitude. Punch didn’t pull its punches but there was definitely an undercurrent of racism within the Punch cartoons, different times I guess.
 

Poorville

Corporal
Joined
Jun 21, 2019
Thanks for sharing these JPK,
We should not forget that during the war Punch printed nineteen full page cartoons in which Lincoln appeared, all but the first and last are unsympathetic, most of them hostile.
Poorville

"Punch" on Slavery and Civil War in America 1841-1865 by Oscar Maurer Victorian Studies Vol. 1, No. 1 (Sep., 1957), p25
 

AndyHall

Colonel
Joined
Dec 13, 2011
Wonderful cartoons. As I recall, the "Columbia's Fix" referred to the choice the United States had to make in the aftermath of the Trent Affair, when a U.S. warship stopped a British mail steamer and seized two Confederate representatives traveling to represent the C.S. in the U.K. and France. The British demanded that the men be released, and eventually the Lincoln administration complied. Lincoln himself said something to the effect, "one war at a time."
 

AndyHall

Colonel
Joined
Dec 13, 2011
What are the origins of the term Columbia in reference to the United States ? I love political cartoons. They still do them in the UK as satire.
"Columbia" traces back to Columbus, of course. Early on, Columbia was commonly depicted as an American Indian princess. That name, referring to the allegorical personification of America, goes back at least to the beginning of the 18th century.

 

KianGaf

Sergeant
Joined
May 29, 2019
Location
Dublin, Ireland
"Columbia" traces back to Columbus, of course. Early on, Columbia was commonly depicted as an American Indian princess. That name, referring to the allegorical personification of America, goes back at least to the beginning of the 18th century.


I was in the District of Columbia, it’s a stunning city. The architecture is amazing. The museums are amazing aswell.
 

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