The Mulligan Guard Lies, But—Surrenders
by Joseph Keppler (1884)
The LOC says:
Illustration shows an explosion at the "Claim Agency, Formerly Republican Head Quarters" with William M. Evarts peeking through the opening in the tent to survey the damage; several small kiosks labeled "Machine Republicans Meet Here, County Democracy Blaine Exchange, Tribune Blaine Organ, [and] Friends of Tammany Meet Here" have been blown over and damaged, also knocked to the ground by the blast were "Keifer, [Blaine holding a paper that states "I Claim Everything"], Logan, W. Reid, Butler, Dana, Burchard [labeled "R.R.R."], Robeson, Elkins, Dorsey," and an unidentified man lying on the ground next to bags of "Soap". On horseback, in the upper left corner, is Grover Cleveland holding a scroll labeled "Reform", and a Puck character carrying a standard labeled "Independents", among the ranks are Carl Schurz, George W. Curtis, and Henry Ward Beecher. Strewn on the ground are papers that state "I.O.U. If we win. J.G., I.O.U. Conditional on Success, C.W.F., [and] I.O.U. If you get there, J. Roach"; and several of the downed "Mulligan Guard" hold papers that state "We Still Claim", whereas Dana's paper states "I Give Up".
Lazy Curator™ sez: Bless you, Library of Congress, for enabling my laziness. I’ve had to shoulder most of the burden of research for what seems like months now.
Having said that, allow me to nit-pick their research.
The unidentified man looks like Jay Gould. I was leaning against him, on account of the I.O.U. from J.G. which suggested he was absent, and racked my brain to come up with other, prominent long-bearded men of the period it might represent. W. W. Belknap? William Mahone? Then I remembered the bags of “soap” and made the connection. Oh, that wacky 19th century slang!
I noticed that John Kelly and Hubert O. Thompson couldn’t even be bothered to show up in person. Pity, especially in the latter case, as I know how popular he is with the Weekly Puck’s readership.
Stevie Elkins is in a precarious position. I mean, it can’t compare with this image from [another publication], but it’s amusing just the same.
The eagle-eyed who were good at playing Classic Concentration™ will notice that I’m running out of order, both in the Mulligan Guards series (there’s more than just the two I posted) and in my usual Weekly Puck running order. In both cases it’s to get in a visual tribute (however backhanded—what do you want? It’s Puck!) to John Alexander Logan, what with his life’s legacy (i.e.: Memorial Day) coming up.
UPDATE: Re-scanned this classic image, probably the best we’ve had so far from the Google Books archive, or are ever likely to get. I hear you ask, “Mike, why are you dedicating so much time and effort in the pursuit of finding the perfect scan of this particular image? Hmmm? Trying to tell us something, are you?” Well...um...hey, look! It’s Hubert O. Thompson!