Tilden and Tammany Hall


 "Slippery Sam"
  Cartoonist:  Thomas Nast
  Source:  Harper's Weekly
  Date:   August 12, 1876, p. 664

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Complete HarpWeek Explanation:
The motive of this cartoon is to associate Democratic presidential nominee Samuel Tilden with political corruption and the morass of the patronage system. Tilden is a slippery eel, that is, a sinister character who is able to evade responsibility for his harmful or self-serving deeds. He has been schooled (fish that he is) in the sleazy ways of Tammany Hall Democrats, from whose mud he arises. Nast, an advocate of civil service reform, often stamped Tilden with the tag line "red tape," an emblem of the frustrating inefficiency and illogic of government bureaucracy. The candidate's fins remind viewers of the divided monetary views of Tilden and his running mate, Thomas Hendricks.












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