Antebellum Era

 untitled (“prize poompkin”)
  Source:  Phunny Phellow
  Date:  November 1859

Click to see a large version of this cartoon...

Click to see a large version of this cartoon

Complete HarpWeek Explanation:
Nast’s second caricature of Horace Greeley appeared on the cover of the November 1859 issue of Phunny Phellow.  Like “Rival Jockeys,” it focuses on journalistic competition and features James Gordon Bennett.  The New York Herald editor and his oversized “prize poompkin” [pumpkin] are about to collide with New York Tribune editor Greeley and his huge squash.  Standing empty-handed between them is New York Times editor Henry Raymond, who complains that he can display no farm produce except for “a couple of small potatoes.”

It seems highly likely that Nast contributed two additional Phunny Phellow front-page cartoons before he sailed for England on February 17, 1860, to cover the world championship boxing match between John C. Heenan and Tom Sayers.  One drawing in the April 1860 issue shows Greeley and Mayor Fernando Wood as promoters of rat-catching dogs, “Billy” (Senator William Henry Seward) and “Dug” (Senator Stephen Douglas), respectively, competing in the “Grand Match for the Presidential Collar.”  The other cartoon, in the May 1860 issue, uses the familiar horserace theme by featuring Greeley as a jockey driving his presidential steed/candidate, Seward, against jockey Bennett driving his steed/candidate, Douglas.  Nast and his Phunny Phellow editors were apparently unaware that Greeley was, on the contrary, determined to block Seward’s nomination by the Republican Party because the Tribune editor thought the New York senator was unelectable.  Greeley’s vigorous opposition to Seward helped secure the nomination for Abraham Lincoln.



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