Alton B. Parker: Pro and Con


 “Tom’s Dream"
  Cartoonist:  William Allen Rogers
  Source:  Harper's Weekly
  Date:   September 10, 1904, pp. 1390-1391

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Complete HarpWeek Explanation:
This cartoon presents Democratic National Committee Chairman Thomas Taggart’s dream of a parade of press endorsements to the home of his party’s presidential nominee, Alton B. Parker (standing on the porch). In reality, most newspapers endorsed Republican Theodore Roosevelt for election in 1904, including some Democratic papers, such as the Sun and The Irish World of New York and the Pilot of Boston.

Here, the dream marchers are (left-right): Oswald Garrison Villard, editor of the New York Evening Post; John R. McLean, publisher of the Cincinnati Enquirer; St. Clair McKelway, editor of the Brooklyn Eagle; Clark Howell, editor of the Atlanta Constitution; Samuel Bowles Jr., editor of the Springfield Republican; James Gordon Bennett Jr., publisher of the New York Herald; Charles R. Miller, editor of The New York Times; Joseph Pulitzer, publisher of the New York World; James Creelman, foreign correspondent for various publications, who worked for the World in 1904; and Henry Watterson, editor of the Louisville Courier-Journal, playing the violin.

In the left-background, the symbol of Puck magazine escorts a figure perhaps intended to represent wealthy voters (Puck endorsed the pro-business Parker) or maybe its new editor, Harry Leon Wilson. The personification of Life magazine looks down condescendingly at Puck from behind an umbrella. In the center-background, publisher William Randolph Hearst of the New York Journal operates a hurdy-gurdy while a boy, perhaps meant to be Journal editor Arthur Brisbane, plays a tambourine. Hearst, a Democratic congressman at the time, had lost the nomination to Parker and his Journal continued to criticize the nominee from the political left. The name of the ship on the horizon, “Sagsomemore,” lampoons the name of Theodore Roosevelt’s New York estate, Sagamore Hill. The banner on it reads “Editors Excursion,” and shows journalists rowing to shore.













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