Portraying Grover Cleveland as a Threat to the Family in Political Cartoons
During the 1884 Campaign
"Neither Drunkards nor Libertines":
Portraying Grover Cleveland as a Threat to the Family
in Political Cartoons During the 1884 Campaign
School of Communications
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Elon, NC 27244
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Paper submitted to the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass
Communication Convention, History Division,
July 30-Aug. 2, 2003, Kansas City, MO.
The purpose of this paper is to examine more broadly cartoons against
Grover Cleveland in the 1884 presidential campaign, exploring how artists
attempted to portray the candidate and his personal and private behavior as
scandalous. These cartoonists combined elements of both Cleveland's
illegitimate child scandal and the tariff issue, combining them to make one
overriding argument: Grover Cleveland is a threat not only to the
Democracy, but also to the American middle-class family.
"Neither Drunkards nor Libertines":
Portraying Grover Cleveland as a Threat to the Family
in Political Cartoons During the 1884 Campaign
When reports surfaced in August 1884 that Grover Cleveland had fathered a
child out of wedlock, it largely sealed the manner in which future
historians would interpret that year's presidential campaign. Publications
aligned against GOP candidate James Blaine had been hammering the former
Speaker of the House for more than two months on charges that he had
improper financial arrangements with the railroads. The subsequent
revelation about the Democratic candidate's personal life forever set the
canvass as one completely absorbed in scandal and inattentive to pressing
needs of the country. "The Dirtiest Election" label would forever stick to
this race,  a campaign perceived nearly a century later as "a vicious
and filthy contest that set a new low in standards and practice."
The scandalous nature of the campaign was a boon to an emerging media form
of the period: the weekly comic magazine. One of these publications, Puck,
came of age during this rancorous campaign, its caricatures of Blaine as a
freak show curiosity angering GOP supporters and delighting its opponents.
A comic competitor, The Judge, emerged as a serious rival with its cartoon
attacks on Cleveland's personal morals. The influence and popularity of the
political cartoon was noted by partisans, who founded campaign-oriented
comic publications such as Munsey's Illustrated Weekly in an attempt to
sway voters. And although not a satirical publication, Harper's Weekly was
engaged in the comic battle through the political cartoons of Thomas Nast,
the last campaign in which he would be a visible force. 
While scandal certainly was a staple of media coverage in the 1884
campaign, closer examination reveals that, contrary to previous
scholarship, the popular press far from ignored public policy issues. While
Cleveland's alleged sexual conduct was a natural topic for cartoonists in
1884 and cartoonists and their publications referred often to the
Democratic candidate's alleged sexual immorality they did not join in
unison, or with the same intensity. Previous scholarly attempts to study
cartooning in this election have overlooked the importance of the free
trade plank of the GOP platform and neglected how artists used the issue
against Grover Cleveland. Some publications sidestepped the sex issue until
late in the campaign, focusing instead on Cleveland's alleged free trade
position and accompanying support of British interests.
As historian Mark Summers points out, the 1884 campaign did have
substantive issues, and candidates did address them. The purpose of this
paper is to examine more broadly cartoons against Grover Cleveland in the
1884 campaign, exploring how artists attempted to portray the candidate and
his personal and private behavior as scandalous. Cartoons about Cleveland's
sexual morality will for the first time be examined in context with other
cartoons that attacked his integrity on policy issues such as the tariff.
The paper will focus on cartoons in three anti-Cleveland publications: The
Judge, which in 1884 established itself as a pro-Republican comic weekly to
rival the Democratic-leaning Puck; Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, a
short-lived pro-GOP campaign magazine published by a young Frank Munsey;
and The Wasp, a San Francisco satirical magazine that chose to support
Blaine in the campaign.
In particular, what emerges from the anti-Cleveland cartoons is a concept
of morality reflecting a Victorian middle class under siege. These
pro-Republican cartoonists combined elements of both Cleveland's
illegitimate child scandal and the tariff issue, taking two seemingly
incongruous elements and combining them to make one overriding argument:
Grover Cleveland is a threat not only to the Democracy, but also to the
American middle-class family.
Sexual Propriety and the Victorian Middle Class
While sexual impropriety in the political arena was not unique to the
latter half of the nineteenth century, the intensity of the "respectable"
middle class in attempting to define and uphold sexual virtue had never
been higher. Proper sexual behavior was not only a personal matter, middle
class moralists argued, but also a means to achieve greater family
financial achievement and societal cohesion. As scholars James Lull and
Stephen Hinerman suggest, the first criteria of a scandal is a
transgression of "social norms reflecting the dominant morality." While
the Victorian middle class was not dominant in terms of numbers, it was
prevalent in exerting influence on what the culture considered as aberrant
moral behavior. To understand fully cartoons concerning Grover Cleveland's
alleged sexual immorality, one must understand how the dominant culture
defined acceptable sexual behavior and the challenges to those Victorian
cultural norms in the 1880s.
As previous scholars have established, the white middle class defined
prevailing standards of sexuality in the Victorian period. While being
relatively small in terms of numbers, the Victorian middle class exerted
great influence on the culture at large through sheer will. The moral
ethic of the respectable middle class dictated "husbands were to provide
the necessities of life, treat their wives with courtesy and protection,
and exercise sexual restraint. . . . A wife's duty was to maintain a
comfortable home, take care of household chores, bear and tend to the
children, and set the moral tone for domestic life."
Among males espousing the Victorian ethic, many adopted the stance of the
"Christian Gentleman," which emerged in the first half of the nineteenth
century as an antidote to the "Masculine Achiever" standard of manhood that
was typified by "accomplishment, autonomy and aggression." The
Christian Gentleman was defined by moderation, and in no area was
moderation more important than in sexual matters. To overindulge in
sex, according to this line of thought, would result in a sapping of powers
away from achieving in other important areas of the marital relationship,
such as providing for the family financially. Moreover, an inner
self-control was seen as the mark of the truly moral middle class man.
If men aspiring to the middle class in 1884 had any questions as to what
was expected of them to reach conferral of status, they had little trouble
finding answers in printed material of the period. Since the early part of
the century, medical experts had told men that they had a finite amount of
energy and that overindulgence in sex could lead to impotence. Now,
promiscuity also was seen as a vice that could hamper a man's move up the
social ladder. Writings by social scientists and critics in the period
castigated both "the immoral rich and the debauched poor" for their lack of
sexual propriety. Many reformers and social critics argued that
promiscuity was the equal of alcohol as vices that kept many Americans in
the slums. To exercise sexual restraint was a prerequisite to joining
and remaining a member of the respectable middle class.
Conceptually, sexual restraint had appeal to a large number of American men
aspiring to the middle class in the late nineteenth century. In practice,
the demands of the Christian Gentleman ethic, combined with increasing
pressures brought on by the increasingly complex business world and rapid
pace of urban life, seemed to be taking a toll by the 1880s. The tenets of
self-control and individual achievement became a source of frustration for
many males who worked in a new environment of highly organized and tightly
scripted corporations that often frustrated upward aspirations. The growing
cities that housed these companies seemed to be a breeding ground for
immorality and vice. To the young Victorian male, the path to success
and righteousness seemed to rely on an increasing number of disparate
factors over which neither he nor his God had much control.
While Victorian-defined cultural admonitions about sex remained in effect
during the early 1880s, they were also being slowly eroded. While some
continued advocating sexual restraint and many even practiced it others
were participating in sexual exploration. As historian Charles Rosenberg
notes, Victorian sexuality included "a peculiar and in some ways
irreconcilable conflict between the imperatives of the Masculine Achiever
and the Christian Gentleman." That conflict between aggression and
control was reaching a boiling point by the time Grover Cleveland's private
sexual past became public domain.
In many ways, those espousing Victorian standards and the Christian
Gentleman ethic felt under siege late in the nineteenth century, but they
were not about to stand by and acquiesce in what they perceived as the
collapse of the culture. According to scholar Elaine May, Victorians "used
every means of persuasion or coercion within their power to encourage, or
even force, conformity to the code." One way this was achieved was
through the emergence of family law, which made clear that marriage was not
merely an arrangement between two adults, but an essential part of
maintaining the societal fabric. Milton Regan argues that through these
statutes, the family became an institution, "a natural and essential part
of the social landscape, associated with certain prescriptions about proper
The dominant Victorian ethic also was reinforced through means of public
condemnation. By calling attention to aberrant behavior and chastising
those who indulged in it, Victorians upheld moral standards and called out
those who, in their view, threatened to tear apart the fabric of the
country. In short, publications against Grover Cleveland were engaging in
what John Thompson, a scholar on the process of scandal, terms "opprobrious
discourse," a necessary condition for a transgression of values to rise to
the level of scandal. This concept recognizes that the reaction of
outsiders to a transgression is not just mere commentary, but rather a part
of a transformative process: "no responses, no scandal." Thompson
defines "opprobrious discourse" as a "moralizing discourse which reproaches
and rebukes, which scolds and condemns, which expresses disapproval of
actions and individuals." Furthermore, for the act to become scandalous, at
least some of this discourse must be "public speech-acts" and move beyond
mere gossip uttered in confidence between acquaintances.
In the case of the 1884 election, the press played the prominent role in
moving discussion about Cleveland's sex life to the level of public speech
act. Such exposure did more than merely bring attention to the
transgression; as Lull and Hinerman suggest, it gave media audiences an
opportunity to negotiate "a moral code they can use to understand and
evaluate human conduct." Under this framework, it is possible to view
cartoons concerning Grover Cleveland's sex life as more than merely a smear
tactic to keep a candidate out of office, but a plea to uphold a Victorian
conception of family and morality that was seemingly losing its grip on the
Stigma of singlehood: The bachelor campaign
Stories about Grover Cleveland's illegitimate child came to dominate press
coverage, but the candidate's masculinity and morality were issues before
the scandal broke. His status as an unmarried male brought questions for
many citizens who upheld the conventional family as the model for the
nation, as Cleveland was just one example in a rising tide of American
males who were staying single. More than 40 percent of males fifteen years
and older were single in 1890, a figure that would not be surpassed until
the late twentieth century. These types of statistics led to a great
deal of concern about bachelors' impact on society, social critics linking
single males to increased lawlessness in the cities, and analysts sounding
the alarm that the falling birth rate caused by rampant bachelorhood would
lead to white race suicide.
For many, Cleveland's bachelorhood was not only a liability but a character
flaw to be feared. One group who loudly articulated that belief was active
in the political process even though it could not cast a ballot. In the
post-Civil War period, a large number of women had been attracted to third
parties such as the Prohibition and Greenback parties because of
pro-suffrage platform planks and the opportunity to serve as delegates.
A number of activists such as Susan B. Anthony returned to the Republicans
in the 1880s because they felt the GOP provided the best opportunity for
lasting change. In campaign literature, these suffragists painted the
battle for the presidency in terms of moral good and evil, making reference
not only to alleged Cleveland debauchery but advocating the need for the
president to have a First Lady. To these activists, GOP candidates "are
neither drunkards nor libertines and their relations with women are so
noble that they will be accompanied to the national capital by wives and
women friends of rare intelligence, high culture, and unquestioned moral
One cartoon in The Judge suggested that Cleveland fit the model of the
bachelor who selfishly indulged in vice at the expense of the greater good
of society. In "What Does He Care?!" (Figure 1), Grant Hamilton
portrayed a well-dressed Cleveland in the center of the frame, reclining in
a chair with his foot on the table, a drink in one hand and a cigar in the
other. Surrounding Cleveland are four vignettes of working-class problems
that the candidate is supposedly ignoring while living the carefree
bachelor life. Children are shown leaving a factory, Cleveland unconcerned
"that they have to work," a woman and man trudge in the rain past a closed
rail station as the candidate ignores "that they have to walk," a laborer
toils with the moon outside the window because under Cleveland "16 hours is
a day's work," and a casket sticks out of an uncovered grave in a potter's
field because "the poor are worked to death." Such depictions stood in
stark contrast to Democratic rhetoric about "Grover the Good," the champion
of reform, as graphically represented in a pre-campaign Nast cartoon in
Harper's Weekly (Figure 2), the New York governor signing bills
accompanied by Theodore Roosevelt, who at the time was a young member of
the New York Assembly who was gaining a reputation for reform. The image of
the hard-working public servant had been cultivated since Cleveland was
Buffalo mayor; a newspaper reporter during the early months of the new
governor's tenure in Albany wrote that Cleveland "remains within doors
constantly, eats and works, eats and works, and works and eats." In the
1884 presidential campaign, however, the image of the tireless worker for
public good was being supplanted by that of the carousing libertine.
Cartoons and the Maria Halpin scandal
When the Buffalo Evening Telegraph broke its story about Cleveland's
illegitimate child with Maria Halpin, the worst fears about bachelor
culture were confirmed for many. Not only had Cleveland taken advantage of
a woman and ruined her honor, the story insinuated, but he backed out of a
promise to marry her, had her placed in a mental institution when she
threatened to cause the aspiring politician trouble, and had tried to hide
the child in an orphanage to conceal the illicit affair. Even worse
were allegations, printed as Gospel truth, by Buffalo's Rev. George H.
Ball, who regaled journalists with tales of Cleveland's drunken escapades
with women of the evening. A few weeks later, investigations and
newspaper reports in pro-Cleveland publications refuted or cast great doubt
upon allegations brought against the candidate by Ball and others,
reporting that the candidate had acted honorably in trying to provide for
the welfare of the child, but that did not stop GOP publications from
continuing to savage Cleveland for his alleged lack of morality. Although
Cleveland famously instructed his supporters, "Whatever you do, tell the
truth," the exact nature of the relationship and the circumstances
surrounding the fate of his child were unclear in press reports during the
Cleveland biographer Allan Nevins has put forth the most widely accepted
version of the relationship between Cleveland and Maria Halpin. In
1871, the young widow had left her two children in New Jersey and moved to
Buffalo where she became a clerk in a drygoods store. Attractive, affable,
conversant in French, and a member of a popular Episcopal church, Halpin
was far from friendless in her new locale. She saw a number of men,
including Cleveland, who was a year her senior. On September 14, 1874,
Halpin gave birth to a child, whom she named Oscar Folsom Cleveland.
Grover Cleveland was not sure whether he was the father, and it is probable
that Maria Halpin was not sure either. Many near the situation believed
that the real father was, as the child's name suggests, Oscar Folsom, one
of Cleveland's law partners, but that Halpin chose Cleveland because he was
the only unmarried man she was seeing. Cleveland, some of his supporters
believed, took responsibility to spare the family of Folsom, who was killed
in an 1875 accident.
Things rapidly fell apart for Halpin after the birth of Oscar. She began
drinking heavily, and Cleveland asked a judge to investigate the welfare of
the child. In early 1876, the judge temporarily placed Halpin in an asylum
and the boy in an orphanage. Cleveland later tried to set up a business for
Halpin in Niagara Falls, but she soon returned to Buffalo in hopes of
regaining her son. When legal means failed, Halpin kidnapped the child, but
she was quickly caught. Oscar eventually was adopted by a prominent family
in western New York, Halpin was rarely heard from thereafter, except for
two 1895 letters to Cleveland threatening to reveal more about their
relationship if she was not given money.
Despite reports that Cleveland had tried to act honorably in providing for
his child born out of wedlock, anti-Cleveland publications continued to
portray the scandal in terms reflecting the story as it was originally told
by scandal-mongers such as the Reverend Ball. With a few notable
exceptions, however, cartoons did not tackle the Halpin scandal on its own,
but combined the theme with other issues in the campaign.
Foremost among satirical publications tackling the scandal was The Judge,
which had steered an uneven editorial course in its short history but in
1884 settled in as a pro-GOP magazine.  Nearly a month after charges of
sexual impropriety were leveled against Cleveland, the magazine claimed it
had no interest in pursuing that angle, charging that his public record was
enough to keep voters from selecting him. "History has shown that great
private vices are perfectly compatible with great public virtues, and it is
not on his record as a private individual but on his record as a public
servant of the country that the people will weigh Grover Cleveland and find
him wanting next November."
A reader might be excused for not taking The Judge editorial seriously.
After all, it did not take much to read between the lines of the cover
cartoon in the same issue and conclude that the magazine was subtly
reminding its audience of the Halpin scandal, even when other issues served
as the topic material. "The Mistake of a Lifetime" (Figure 3)  was on
its surface about the defection of reform Republicans to the Democratic
camp. Harper's Weekly editor George William Curtis, a prominent leader of
the independent Republicans, is dressed in women's clothes and clutches a
rag baby, a symbol throughout the campaign for publications that had also
bolted the GOP. A sign over Cleveland's poster reading "National Theatre:
Led Astray," adds to the insinuation that the Mugwumps were deceiving
themselves in thinking Cleveland was a believer in reform. Taking the
poster into account with the depiction of mother and child, it is also
clear that the cartoon is a thinly veiled attempt to remind readers of
Cleveland's illegitimate child.
Two weeks later, The Judge outwardly was wavering on its pledge to steer
clear of the Halpin scandal and also sent out a warning to Democratic
operatives who continued to pound Blaine on his most famous public scandal,
an alleged improper financial relationship with the Little Rock and Fort
Smith Railroad that resurfaced in the campaign with more damaging
correspondence from Blaine that had been saved by a clerk. "Grover, don't
make so much talk about the 'Mulligan Letters' till we learn if Maria has
not written some which you may find more damaging. "
By early September, nearly two months after the scandal broke and weeks
after investigators cast serious doubt upon many aspects of the original
story in the Buffalo Evening Telegraph, cartoons in The Judge attempted to
bring questions about Cleveland's private character back to the foreground.
"Cleveland Shorn of His Strength" (Figure 4) made use of the biblical
tale of Samson and Delilah to underscore Cleveland's alleged women
troubles. As weakness for a woman caused Samson to give up the source of
his strength, Cleveland's dalliance would keep him from the power he sought
as a presidential candidate, the cartoon suggests. At the right of the
cartoon, Delilah holds shears in one hand and Cleveland's hair labeled
"His Moral Character" in the other. Looking through a window above her
are Mugwumps Carl Schurz and Henry Ward Beecher with a "Investigating
Committee" sign, suggesting not only that reports absolving Cleveland were
partisan but that they were also irrelevant; those who still supported the
Democratic candidate were on the outside looking in at what was really
happening to Cleveland in the court of public opinion. The Philistines
tying up Cleveland include Tammany boss John Kelly and a kneeling Benjamin
Butler, who was running as a third-party candidate on the Greenback-Labor
ticket and was secretly being supported by the GOP, which hoped he could
siphon off enough votes from Cleveland to put Blaine in the White House.
While graphically the message is clear, words in the same issue suggest
that perhaps writers and artists at The Judge were struggling with how, or
whether, to depict Cleveland's personal scandal. Major cartoons such as
"Cleveland Shorn of His Strength" often were accompanied by short articles
on the editorial page; in this case, the writer seems chagrined about being
"forced" to refer to Cleveland as a Samson-like character, "far from
believing that the illustrious Grover was ever the man to astonish the
world by feats of power, mental, physical, or political." Grudgingly,
the writer supposes that "The picture looks as if he designed to show that
there is no position, no power, no ambition which may not be impaired by
undue yielding to carnal passion."
Two weeks later, a cartoon in The Judge again referred to Cleveland's
affair and the woman with whom he had been involved. "From One Maria to
Another" (Figure 5), shows a diminutive Cleveland being escorted by a large
policeman to a "Black Maria," a term in the 1800s for a carriage that
delivered convicts to prison. The connection to Cleveland's affair is made
by a small "Maria's Cottage" sign on the wall just behind Cleveland, the
wall also sporting two hearts with an arrow through them. An editorial in
the same issue describes the scene: "From the side of Maria Halpin he is
dragged to the obscurity of the Black Maria the prison van which is to
take him, tried, convicted, and sentenced, to suffer his penalty and the
penalty is political death."
The cartoon itself, however, suggests that The Judge is not comfortable
with making the Halpin scandal the sole emphasis of its attacks. In a
similar manner as "Led Astray" made subtle reference to the Halpin scandal
while outwardly dealing with the Mugwump defection, "From One Maria to
Another" deals with a public policy issue as well. Cleveland is burdened
with a ball and chain labeled "5ct Veto," referring to his killing a bill
as governor a year earlier that would have lowered all New York City
transit fares to five cents. The bill was supported by many political
factions, including the Democratic Tammany Hall machine, because of its
appeal to working voters. The legislation was extremely popular with the
public, not only because it would save commuters money but also because the
city rails were controlled by robber baron Jay Gould, loathed by many for
his ruthless business practices. It was hard to find people who were
against taking money out of Gould's pockets.
Cleveland was no fan of Gould, but he saw problems with the legislation.
After studying the bill in great detail, as was his practice, the governor
determined that the bill was an unconstitutional violation of a fair
contract. Cleveland, recalling the event years later, said he went to bed
the night of the veto muttering, "By tomorrow at this time I shall be the
most unpopular man in the state of New York." Cleveland's fears were
largely unfounded as most newspapers and many legislators supported the
veto after hearing the governor's reasoning.
Cleveland opponents tried to revive the controversy in 1884, framing the
veto not as a stand on constitutional principle but an attack on the
working class. Driving the Black Maria is a workingman, denoted by his
apron and folded paper hat. It becomes clear that use of "Maria" is not the
only play on words in this cartoon. The cartoon tells the reader that
Cleveland is not only going to the "Reform Penitentiary" at the top of the
hill because of his personal scandal but because of his lack of concern for
the plight of the working class. Although barely visible in the cartoon,
"Reform Penitentiary" can be interpreted not only as an argument that
Cleveland's morals need "reform," but also that Cleveland's "reform" policy
as governor of New York was a fraud perpetuated on working men and their
The following week, The Judge took its most direct swipe at the Halpin
scandal with Frank Beard's infamous cover cartoon "Another Voice for
Cleveland," (Figure 6). A crying woman, presumably Maria Halpin, holds
a baby who is yelling, "I want my pa!" as an angry Cleveland stomps his
feet. Unlike the previous cartoons alluding to the Halpin scandal, "Another
Voice for Cleveland" is devoid of references to other campaign issues,
except perhaps the "Grover the Good" tag that dangles from the candidate's
coat. The label had been used by Democrats to champion his reform record;
Beard uses it here to achieve graphic contradiction, arguing that
Cleveland's actions did not measure up to the lofty mottos given him.
Overall, however, "Another Voice for Cleveland" addresses the Halpin
scandal more bluntly than any previous cartoon. An editorial in the same
edition tries to leave the impression that the fate of Oscar Folsom
Cleveland is consuming the attention of the American public: "All the land,
from Maine to California, has become acquainted with that baby's position
and its wants, and shares in its anxiety to know, 'Where's my papa?' Well
dear, as far as The Judge knows, your papa is at Albany, or thereabouts,
and he is not a little disturbed by your incessant clamor. He is not fond
of children, anyhow, and he seems to fear that you are interfering with his
presidential prospects." For one of the few times in the campaign,
cartoonists made Cleveland's personal scandal the sole issue, choosing not
to attach illegitimacy to a perceived policy misstep.
The Mormon question: Cleveland and polygamy
Some of the cartoons echoed sensational charges by, among others, the New
York Sun that Cleveland was a "course debauchee who would bring his harlots
with him to Washington and hire lodgings for them convenient to the White
House." "Congenial Company" (Figure 7) in The Judge goes even
further, suggesting Cleveland was in favor of polygamy. The practice of
having multiple wives was being fought against with more vigor than ever in
the 1880s because of a perceived threat from a religious group in the West.
The Mormons had come under plentiful attack since officially announcing in
1852 its practice of encouraging men to marry more than one wife.
Theologically speaking, the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints
believed that procreation was the rightful purpose of sex and that a devout
Mormon would be accompanied by his wives and children in the afterlife.
Believing that statutes outlawing polygamy were unconstitutional
infringements upon religious practice, Mormons brought a test case before
the Supreme Court in 1878. In Reynolds v. United States, the Court
ruled against the Mormons, Chief Justice Morrison R. Waite writing that the
maintenance of monogamous marriage was critical to the survival of society
and democracy. By late 1880, fueled in part by Mormon women who
produced a public petition against the Mormon conception of marriage, the
Women's National Anti-Polygamy Society was formed, its Anti-Polygamy
Standard actively encouraging women across the country to form chapters.
The group's influence was nearly immediate; by 1882 it could claim partial
credit for both bringing legislation that criminalized polygamy and ousting
Utah's territorial representative, a polygamist, from Congress.
"Congenial Company" puts these cultural concerns in context of the campaign
and rumors of Cleveland's dalliances with numerous women. Cleveland walks
arm-in-arm with a man "From Salt Lake," as the label on his bag suggests. A
sign on the wall near them reads "The Mormons for Cleveland, Birds of a
Feather Flock Together." Whispers that Cleveland shared the Mormons' views
on multiple wives occurred throughout the campaign.
In fact, the Mormon question may explain why Blaine did not react
immediately to the Reverend Burchard's disastrous slur against Catholics at
a pro-Blaine rally in late October, the preacher infamously saying that the
Democrats were the party of "Rum, Romanism and Rebellion." Historian Mark
Summers suggests that Blaine heard "Rum, Mormonism and Rebellion," not
far-fetched considering the backlash against Mormons in the period.
Friends in high places: The preacher and the candidate
The Judge also continued to portray graphically allegations about
Cleveland's sex life that had been refuted, or at least put into more
accurate context, by later investigations and newspaper reports. In "No
Further Use For Her" (Figure 8), a scowling Cleveland pushes Maria
Halpin into an asylum, the mother of his child clasping her hands as if she
were in prayer over her fate. Halpin is portrayed as the helpless victim,
not as the alcoholic who was putting her child's well-being into jeopardy.
Standing to the side under a poster reading "For President, Grover
Cleveland, Champion of Purity Morality," watching passively with arms
folded, is famed preacher Henry Ward Beecher. The minister publicly pledged
his support for Cleveland despite the candidate's sexual transgressions,
but considering the Congregationalist's own past, the endorsement
potentially was as much a burden as a benefit.
The Plymouth Church in Brooklyn became prominent and controversial in the
mid-1800s thanks to Beecher, the son of famous evangelist Lyman Beecher and
brother of author Harriet Beecher Stowe. Beecher's attitude toward religion
as "something to be enjoyed" was popular but also criticized by more
traditional clergy for inconsistent theological stances Beecher seemingly
paying more attention to some Christian tenets than others. More
traditional Christians also were critical of Beecher's delivery on the
pulpit, which included making jokes and drawing applause from the
congregation, "unseemly" according to previously accepted Protestant
Beecher's ministry and future in the public eye were jeopardized in 1872
when radical reformer Victoria Woodhull charged Beecher with committing
adultery with one of his parishioners, Elizabeth Tilton. Tilton's husband,
Theodore, repeated the charges in 1874, igniting a firestorm of press
coverage about the alleged affair. A Beecher-appointed Plymouth Church
committee declared Beecher innocent, and a civil suit filed by Theodore
Tilton against Beecher ended in a hung jury after fifty-two ballots in
1875. In the court of public opinion, however, many believed the
charges of adultery against Beecher were true, as did many of the most
prominent newspapers. One of the major publications that stayed in
Beecher's corner, however, was none other than Harper's Weekly, which would
not abandon Cleveland in 1884 either. Harper's argued that the lack of a
decision in the courtroom and the general confusion about the facts in the
Beecher-Tilton scandal were unimportant the masses had sided with the
minister. "The real result is not to be sought in the formal verdict of the
jury, but in the general public impression," the magazine wrote after the
Beecher case, "for as the evidence in no cause was more universally read,
so the verdict in every man's breast was never more entirely independent of
that of the court-room." The view of Harper's was hardly predominant,
as the preacher continued to receive derisive press coverage for years
following the trial.
The Democratic candidate hardly shied away from Beecher, a prominent figure
in the Mugwump movement. Cleveland had long been an admirer of Beecher; as
a young man in the 1850s he had heard many of the preacher's sermons. In
the 1884 election, Cleveland openly courted the evangelist's support,
sending a letter to Beecher's wife confessing his affair with Maria Halpin
but denying other charges of debauchery. Beecher avidly spoke in behalf
of Cleveland during the campaign, most famously in his "Brooklyn Rink"
speech in late October, not only defending the candidate from personal
attacks but suggesting that attacks on his own morality had been off the
mark nearly ten years earlier:
Men counsel me to prudence lest I stir again my own griefs. No! I will not
be prudent. If I refuse to interpose a shield of well-placed confidence
between Governor Cleveland and the swarm of liars that nuzzle in the mud,
or sling arrows from ambush, may my tongue cleave in the roof of my mouth,
and my right hand forget its cunning. I will imitate the noble example set
me by Plymouth Church in the day of my calamity. They were not ashamed of
my bonds. They stood by me with God-sent loyalty. It was a heroic deed.
They have set my duty before me, and I will imitate their example.
The ties between Cleveland and Beecher were most forcefully made in a San
Francisco publication that has been largely overlooked by scholars studying
the history of graphic satire, receiving only cursory mention in the most
important works on magazines and comic art. The Wasp first appeared in
1876 and may have been the first American newspaper to publish cartoons in
color. Its content reflected such tenets of middle-class morality as
"industriousness, sobriety, thrift, class harmony," delivered in a stinging
manner that corresponded with its name. The satirical magazine is
perhaps best known for the writings of Ambrose Bierce, who during his
editorship of The Wasp from 1881-1886 skewered figures both public and
private in his column of "Prattle." While The Wasp was known as a
Democratic publication, it was becoming more independent by 1884, as
evidenced by its support of Blaine. Explaining the magazine's position,
Bierce wrote "We prefer Blaine because we know him," in contrast to the
political upstart Cleveland and stated that Blaine "has a party behind him
that represents what is best in American politics." The choice of Blaine
was not "on the belief that he is a more moral man than Cleveland."
In at least two prominent cartoons, however, The Wasp made Cleveland's
morality the target of attack, but did so only in context with Beecher.
When the preacher pledged his unwavering support for the Cleveland
candidacy, artists in The Wasp graphically tied the two figures together in
debauchery. In "Happy Reminiscences 'Painting the Town Red' " (Figure
9), an obviously intoxicated Beecher and Cleveland stumble down a
cobblestone street, flailing away with brushes dripping with red paint,
graphically portraying the clichι that refers to wild, drunken behavior. A
sign on Beecher's side of the street reads "Elizabeth Tilton," a similar
sign on Cleveland's side reads "Maria Halpin," reminding readers of the
women with whom each of the two men were reportedly involved. In the
distance behind the men is a church steeple, adding to the insinuation that
the two men had drifted far from standards that modern-day Christians and
their followers deemed acceptable.
Artists at The Wasp also paired Cleveland with Beecher in "At The
Confessional" (Figure 10). In this cartoon, the two appear not as two
buddies out for a good time, but with Beecher as the authority figure
listening to a confession by one of his followers. A tearful Cleveland,
wrapped with a long list of legislation he vetoed as governor, tells his
sins to Beecher, who holds his ample belly in laughter. The list of vetoes
makes the overall message of the cartoon unclear, however. Exactly what
makes Beecher laugh? The confessional booths are open, meaning that Beecher
must know who is on the other side. Assuming Cleveland is confessing about
Maria Halpin, the most likely intended message is that Beecher is getting
vicarious pleasure from hearing about the dalliance. Or, is Beecher amused
that the candidate is so concerned with the sex scandal when he should be
focusing attention on all the visible vetoes he carries with him that are
be perceived as a slap at working-class voters? The technique of combining
personal attack with public policy did not always make for graphic clarity.
The Judge also attacked the Cleveland-Beecher connection in the multi-panel
"The Political Parson and His Candidate" (Figure 11). Starting
clockwise from the upper-left corner, Beecher and Cleveland are portrayed
under the tree of "Forbidden Fruit," each holding a piece of fruit behind
his back while pointing amusingly at the other. In the following panel,
Beecher, standing on a ball depicting Cleveland, tries to roll it up the
precarious plank of "Public Opinion" to the presidential chair. In another
panel, Cleveland carries a large basket of "His Sin" containing a young
woman, Beecher offering, "Your burden is too heavy, let me carry it." In
the next panel, Beecher tries to brush the dust of scandal out of
Cleveland's coat, remarking "I can't get all the dirt out, but perhaps it
won't be noticed." In the largest panel, Cleveland has women of "Pleasure"
and "Folly" on each arm as Beecher speaks to a "Young American" and
reassures him, "Here is a Presidential Candidate whose character and record
I'm well satisfied with." Beecher carries a copy of a book Advice to Young
Men, likely making reference to a published collection of lectures on
morality that Beecher authored years earlier. This copy, however, contains
the sarcastic suggestion "Don't Be Found Out." The largest panel is saved
for the portion of the Beecher-Cleveland connection that disturbed many:
hypocrisy. In a similar manner as Beecher was chastised for not living up
to the moral standards he professed, "Grover the Good" was ridiculed for
not being as upstanding as Democratic campaign machinery would have voters
believe. Still, cartoonists in large part avoided dealing with the
Cleveland scandal on its own terms, continuing to place the episode in
context of other perceived scandalous behavior, this time Beecher's
adultery trial of years earlier. Publications featuring the political
cartoon were treading less lightly around Cleveland's Buffalo Scandal as
the campaign neared conclusion, however, and one such magazine would make a
complete turnabout in the canvass's final days.
Munsey's and The Buffalo Scandal
Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, the pro-Blaine publication that focused
largely on the tariff issue, initially took a cautious tact in dealing with
Cleveland's sex life. The Buffalo Scandal was several weeks old when
the magazine made its debut, and the new publication made little of the
affair at first. Maria Halpin's name never appeared on its pages. The only
reference to the scandal in the first two issues concerned a reprinted
article from the Independent, a Republican journal that reversed its
decision to endorse Cleveland on moral grounds. Taking the relative
moral high ground would not last for long. Soon, Munsey's began to express
frustration over a perceived double standard for the two candidates: "Now
why is past alleged unchastity to be dismissed in silence, while a like
dishonesty is not?"
Less than a month before the election, Munsey's Illustrated Weekly turned
its artistic content toward the Buffalo Scandal. On October 11, the
publication ran a double-page illustration, "The Modern Achilles" (Figure
12). In a similar manner as The Judge had approached Cleveland's
personal morality by coupling it with questions about his public record,
Munsey's focused this cartoon on the tariff issue. Blaine, the title
character, holds a shield titled "Protection" and drives a chariot,
dragging a slain Cleveland as Hector, who has a shield titled "Free Trade."
However, a closer examination reveals that Munsey's is casting aspersions
on more than just Cleveland's stance on the tariff. "Immorality" is written
across Cleveland's suit; papers with "Buffalo Scandal" and "A Blot Upon
American Morality" are trampled under the horses' feet, along with other
papers labeling Cleveland as "Defender of Monopolies" and "The Enemy of the
Workingman." The visual rhetoric not only paints Blaine as a heroic
defender of the working class, but Cleveland as its enemy, both
economically and morally.
As occurred with The Judge, graphic conceptions of Cleveland's fall from
moral grace were eventually portrayed in Munsey's without mention of public
policy. Less than two weeks before the election, a front-page illustration
dealt directly with the Buffalo Scandal and Cleveland's personal morals
(Figure 13). The cartoon, based on Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet
Letter, has Cleveland placed in a public pillory. Among those surrounding
Cleveland are Schurz, Curtis and Nast, who has drawn a Cleveland head with
halo. As election day grew near, Munsey's Illustrated Weekly devoted more
attention to "the personal record of Grover Cleveland, with his leman and
his illegitimate son."
That increased attention to personal morals led Munsey's back to one of the
campaign's most infamous scandalmongers in the closing days. Although The
Rev. George H. Ball, the source for much of the early coverage of
Cleveland's alleged debauchery, had been discredited in a number of other
publications, he received one more forum in the last Munsey's published
before the election. Ball, according to the publication, had "the actual
facts" about the Democratic candidate's activity at a Buffalo saloon. "Some
have taken the testimony of men who personally know of the facts; have
often seen Cleveland there; have drunk with him in the saloon, seen him too
drunk to walk without help, and seen him give money to his favorite girl
under circumstances clearly indicating that it was for no legitimate
object." Even though the leading Republican newspaper in Buffalo no
longer took Ball or his evidence seriously, Munsey had taken to
peddling rumor and innuendo in his campaign magazine.
Discussion and Conclusions
As this paper has demonstrated, cartoonists took on the Maria Halpin
scandal, but usually did so in layers, placing Cleveland's personal moral
indiscretion along with perceived public policy blunders. Such techniques
suggest that cartoonists and their publications generally were
uncomfortable in solely addressing sexual topics, reflecting dominant
standards that made subjects such as illegitimacy inappropriate for polite
company. Combining private and public behaviors allowed cartoonists to
castigate Cleveland in a process of "opprobrious discourse," a necessary
aspect of bringing a moral transgression to the level of scandal. As
election day drew closer, however, cartoonists were less timid about
addressing Cleveland's Buffalo Scandal in blunt terms.
Previous research, in the few instances it has addressed cartooning against
Grover Cleveland in the 1884 campaign, has left the impression that the
defining characteristic was a relentless focus on the Maria Halpin scandal.
This paper demonstrates that while a great deal of attention was paid to
Cleveland's illegitimate child, the graphic discourse had a much broader
argument for why a Cleveland presidency would be damaging to the country.
Scholars such as John Thompson have commented on the media's role in
contributing to the "shifting boundaries between the public and the
private." That boundary seemed to be as much in contention here as in
any time in American history, if anti-Cleveland cartoons in the 1884
election are any indication. Charges of private scandal almost always
shared space with allegations of public wrongdoing within the same cartoon.
Rare was the occasion when cartoonists solely addressed Cleveland's
personal morality, suggesting that despite increasing attention to lurid
items in the popular press, creators of content during the campaign felt
the need to legitimize coverage of sexual misconduct by placing it in
context of public policy.
The idea that detailing personal sexual transgressions would be too hot for
editors to handle may be one explanation for why cartoon coverage of the
Halpin scandal was often couched in other issues and came long after the
initial allegations had been published. For example, Munsey's Illustrated
Weekly referred to Cleveland's Buffalo Scandal in vague generalities, and
its cartoonists ignored it, during much of the journal's short history.
This is consistent with, as historian Mark Summers argues, the shift of
publications during the period from strict party mouthpieces to content
that would attract large general audiences and be appropriate for all
members of the family. The shift to mass publications made personal scandal
unsuitable for most editors targeting American homes.
Munsey's cartoon "Veto, Vice, Veto" (Figure 14)  perhaps serves as a
snapshot of how pro-Republican cartoonists approached making their graphic
arguments that Grover Cleveland's behavior was scandalous. Cleveland is
portrayed as Richard III, but the words above him are a clear sign that
graphic attacks on the Democratic candidate went well beyond his sexual
experiences. The words make reference both to the Buffalo Scandal and his
reputation for killing legislation to benefit workers while New York
governor, both tools used to demonstrate, the artists believed, Cleveland's
lack of fitness for office. In pro-Republican cartoons, Cleveland was not
only undermining the moral fabric of the American family but was also
taking food off its table.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 1: "What Does He Care?" The Judge, 23 August 1884, 16.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 2: "Reform Without Bloodshed," Harper's Weekly, 19 April 1884, 249.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 3: "The Mistake of a Lifetime," The Judge, 16 August 1884, 1.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 4: "Cleveland Shorn of His Strength," The Judge, 6 September 1884, 8-9.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 5: "From One Maria To Another," The Judge, 20 September 1884, 16.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 6: "Another Voice for Cleveland," The Judge, 27 September 1884, 1.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 7: "Congenial Company," The Judge, 25 October 1884, 3.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 8: "No Further Use For Her," The Judge, 13 September 1884, 12.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 9: "Happy Reminiscences," The Wasp, 27 September 1884, 1.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 10: "At the Confessional," The Wasp, 18 October 1884, 16.
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 11: "The Political Parson and His Candidate," The Judge, 11 October
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 12: "The Modern Achilles," Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 11 October
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 13: Cleveland in pillory, Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 25 October
[--- ??? Graphic Goes Here ---]
Figure 14: "Veto, Vice, Veto," Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 25 October
 In the early 1870s, Blaine was rumored to be the beneficiary of a
financial deal in which bonds from the bankrupt Little Rock and Fort Smith
Railroad had been purchased at far above market value by Union Pacific
Railroad. Blaine survived a House investigation in 1876, but the issue
resurfaced again in the 1884 campaign with the release of more potentially
incriminating letters that had been saved by a railroad clerk named James
Mulligan. In the most damaging of the "Mulligan Letters," Blaine asked a
business associate to write a letter of vindication for him and enclosed a
draft of how he wanted it to read. On the cover document, Blaine wrote
"Burn this letter." David Saville Muzzey, James G. Blaine, A Political Idol
of Other Days, American Political Leaders Series (New York: Dodd Mead &
Company, 1934), 302-4.
 See, for example, Marvin and Dorothy Rosenberg, "The Dirtiest
Election," American Heritage 13, no. 5 (1962): 4-9.
 Arthur Meier Schlesinger and Fred L. Israel, History of American
Presidential Elections, 1789-1968 (New York: Chelsea House, 1971), s.v.
"Election of 1884," by Mark D. Hirsch, 1572.
 Most scholarship on political cartooning in the 1884 campaign has
focused on attacks against Blaine, particularly the "Tattooed Man' series
in Puck, which portrayed Blaine as a Tattooed Man in a Dime Museum. See,
e.g., Samuel J. Thomas, "The Tattooed Man Caricatures and the Presidential
Campaign of 1884," Journal of American Culture 10, no. 4 (1987): 1-20;
Everette E. Dennis and Christopher Allen, "Puck, the Comic Weekly,"
Journalism History 6, no. 1 (1979): 2-7, 13; Richard Samuel West, Satire on
Stone: The Political Cartoons of Joseph Keppler (Urbana: University of
Illinois Press, 1988); Richard Samuel West, "Laboring to Save Fools, The
Presidential Contest of 1884 As Seen in the Pages of Puck and Judge,"
Target (Winter 1983): 14-20; Samuel A. Tower, Cartoons and Lampoons: The
Art of Political Satire (New York: Julian Messner, 1982), 140-43; William
Murrell and Whitney Museum of American Art, A History of American Graphic
Humor (New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1938), 74-83; and Paul
Somers, Editorial Cartooning and Caricature: A Reference Guide, American
Popular Culture Series, (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1998), 9-11.
 In the years following Reconstruction, the Democrats had increasingly
been aligned with lower tariffs in line with the agrarian Solid South and
using the issue to illustrate how, in their view, protectionism was only
serving the interests of rich industrialists. Meanwhile, Republicans were
advocating protectionism in the name of sheltering the American laborer
against the threat of cheap British goods and in the process upholding the
way of life of the American family. By 1884 Republicans hoped the tariff
could help them make inroads with Irish-Americans by raising the specter of
British economic domination and with an increasing industrial "New South"
that was becoming less dependent on agriculture. Mark W. Summers, Rum,
Romanism, and Rebellion: The Making of a President 1884 (Chapel Hill, NC:
University of North Carolina Press, 2000), 95-7. Helpful background on the
tariff issue can be found in Mark W. Summers, The Gilded Age, or, The
Hazard of New Functions (Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 1997),
207-9; and S. Walter Poulshock, The Two Parties and the Tariff in the 1880s
(Syracuse NY: Syracuse University Press, 1965).
 Summers, Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion, xii.
 James Lull and Stephen Hinerman, "The Search for Scandal," chap in.
James Lull and Stephen Hinerman, eds., Media Scandals: Morality and Desire
in the Popular Culture Marketplace (New York: Columbia University Press,
 John C. Fout and Maura Shaw Tantillo, eds., American Sexual Politics:
Sex, Gender and Race Since the Civil War (Chicago: University of Chicago
Press, 1993), 6.
 Milton C. Regan, Jr., Family Law and the Pursuit of Intimacy (New
York: New York University Press, 1993), 7.
 Elaine May, Great Expectations: Marriage and Divorce in
Post-Victorian America (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1980), 157.
 E. Anthony Rotundo, "Learning About Manhood: Gender Ideals and the
Middle-Class Family in Nineteenth-Century America," chap. in J.A. Mangan
and James Walvin, eds., Manliness and Morality: Middle-Class Masculinity in
Britain and America, 1800-1940 (New York : St. Martin's Press, 1987), 37-8.
 Charles E. Rosenberg, "Sexuality, Class and Role in 19th-Century
America," American Quarterly 25 (1973), 139.
 Kevin J. Mumford, " 'Lost Manhood' Found: Male Sexual Impotence and
Victorian Culture in the United States," chap. in John C. Fout and Maura
Shaw Tantillo, eds., American Sexual Politics: Sex, Gender and Race Since
the Civil War (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993), 81.
 Rosenberg, "Sexuality, Class and Role in 19th-Century America," 143.
 Rosenberg, "Sexuality, Class and Role in 19th-Century America," 144.
 Susan Curtis, A Consuming Faith: The Social Gospel and Modern
American Culture (Columbia, MO: University of Missouri Press, 2001), 75.
 Rosenberg, "Sexuality Class and Role in 19th-Century America," 150.
 May, Great Expectations, 21.
 Regan, Family Law and the Pursuit of Intimacy, 26.
 John B. Thompson, "Scandal and Social Theory," chap. in James Lull
and Stephen Hinerman, eds., Media Scandals: Morality and Desire in the
Popular Culture Marketplace (New York: Columbia University Press, 1997), 44.
 Thompson, "Scandal and Social Theory," 45.
 Lull and Hinerman, "The Search for Scandal," 3.
 Howard P. Chudacoff, The Age of the Bachelor: Creating an American
Subculture (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1999), 48.
 Chudacoff, The Age of the Bachelor, 4.
 Melanie Susan Gustafson, Women and the Republican Party, 1854-1924
(Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press, 2001), 59.
 Gustafson, Women and the Republican Party, 58.
 The Woman's Journal, 9 August 1884, 253.
 The Judge, 23 August 1884, 16.
 Harper's Weekly, 19 April 1884, 249.
 Albany Evening Journal, 23 March 1883; quoted in H. Paul Jeffers, An
Honest President: The Life and Presidencies of Grover Cleveland (New York:
W. Morrow, 2000), 79.
 Summers, Rum, Romanism and Rebellion, 181.
 Summers, Rum, Romanism and Rebellion, 180.
 Summers, Rum, Romanism and Rebellion, 182; New York World, 8 August
1884, 1; New York World, 11 August 1884, 2.
 Telegram from Grover Cleveland to Charles W. Goodyear, 23 July 1884,
in Allan Nevins, Letters of Grover Cleveland: 1850-1908 (Boston: Houghton
Mifflin Company, 1933), 37.
 Allan Nevins, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Courage (New York: Dodd,
Mead and Company, 1933), 162-9.
 Nevins, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Courage, 164-5.
 Alyn Brodsky, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Character (New York:
Truman Talley Books, St. Martin's Press, 2000), 90. Cleveland, however, was
angered at a supporter who had told the press of the Folsom connection and
claimed it was not true. Telegram from Grover Cleveland to Daniel N,
Lockwood, 31 July 1884, in Nevins, Letters of Grover Cleveland, 37-8.
 Nevins, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Courage, 165-6.
 Among the early stances of The Judge were anti-Semitism, early
support for Blaine followed by ruthless attacks against him, and on-again,
off-again support for Greenback advocate Benjamin Butler. Richard Samuel
West, "Laboring to Save Fools: The Presidential Contest of 1884 as Seen in
the Pages of Puck and Judge." Target (Winter 1983): 15.
 The Judge, 16 August 1884, 2.
 The Judge, 16 August 1884, 1.
 The Judge, 30 August 1884, 2.
 The Judge, 6 September 1884, 8-9.
 The Judge, 6 September 1884, 2.
 The Judge, 6 September 1884, 2.
 The Judge, 20 September 1884, 2.
 Nevins, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Courage, 115-7.
 Nevins, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Courage, 117-8.
 The Judge, 27 September 1884, 1.
 The Judge, 27 September 1884, 2-3.
 New York World, 8 August 1884, 4.
 The Judge, 25 October 1884, 3.
 Joan Smyth Iversen, "A Debate on the American Home: The Antipolygamy
Controversy, 1880-1890," chap. in John C. Fout and Maura Shaw Tantillo,
eds., American Sexual Politics: Sex, Gender and Race Since the Civil War
(Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1993), 123-24.
 Reynolds v. United States, 98 U.S. 145 (1878).
 Iversen, "A Debate on the American Home," 126.
 Iversen, "A Debate on the American Home," 126-27. The Edmunds Bill
gave Federal marshals the power to arrest polygamists and force their
families to testify against them.
 Cleveland's stance on the Mormon question was quite clear after his
election. In his inaugural speech, he railed against polygamy as
"destructive of the family relation and offensive to the moral sense of the
civilized world." In 1887, he approved plans to seize Mormon-owned property
until the church formally renounced polygamy. Brodsky, Grover Cleveland: A
Study in Character, 113, 454.
 Summers, Rum, Romanism and Rebellion, 281, 283; citing New York Sun,
19 November 1884.
 The Judge, 13 September 1884, 12.
 Paul A. Carter, The Spiritual Crisis of the Gilded Age (DeKalb, IL:
Northern Illinois University Press, 1971), 125, 127-8, 130.
 The New York Times published 105 articles and thirty-seven editorials
about the Beecher-Tilton scandal in the second half of 1874. Carter, The
Spiritual Crisis of the Gilded Age, 115.
 Carter, The Spiritual Crisis of the Gilded Age, 117.
 Carter, The Spiritual Crisis of the Gilded Age, 121.
 Harper's Weekly, 17 July 1875, 574.
 Richard Wightman Fox, Trials of Intimacy: Love and Loss in the
Beecher-Tilton Scandal (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1999), 47-8.
 Fox, Trials of Intimacy, 48-9.
 The Wasp receives only a few sentences in Frank Luther Mott's A
History of American Magazines (Cambridge, MA: The Belknap Press of Harvard
University Press, 1957), 77, 106. William Murrell's four-paragraph coverage
of the magazine is limited to brief description of five cartoons. A History
of American Graphic Humor (New York: Whitney Museum of American Art, 1938),
 Roger Olmsted, "The Cigar-Box Papers: A Local View of the Centennial
Electoral Scandals," California Historical Quarterly 1976 55(3): 256.
 Richard A. Fitzgerald, "The San Francisco Illustrated Wasp and
Chinese Labor in the 1870s," Southwest Economy and Society 1981 5(3): 3.
 S.T. Joshi and David E. Schultz, eds., Ambrose Bierce: A Sole
Survivor, Bits of Autobiography (Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee
Press, 1998), xiv.
 Roy Morris, Jr., Ambrose Bierce: Alone in Bad Company (New York:
Crown Publishers, Inc., 1995), 174.
 The Wasp, 4 October 1884, 4.
 The Wasp, 27 September 1884, 1.
 The Wasp, 18 October 1884, 16.
 The Judge, 11 October 1884, 8-9.
 Munsey is perhaps best remembered for dropping the price of a later
publication, Munsey's Magazine, to ten cents in 1893, ushering in the era
of the mass-circulation magazine. He also owned eighteen newspapers in his
career and is credited for killing half of them through cutting and
consolidating. Margaret A. Blanchard, ed. History of the Mass Media in the
United States: An Encyclopedia (Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn, 1998), s.v.
"Frank A. Munsey," by Jonathan Y. Hill. In 1884, he was a struggling young
publisher of a children's magazine, The Golden Argosy, but started the
campaign magazine to help Blaine, whom he had met in Maine.
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 13 September 1884, 19.
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 20 September 1884, 34.
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 11 October 1884, 88-9.
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 25 October 1884, 113.
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 25 October 1884, 114. "Leman" is a term
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 1 November 1884, 131.
 Summers, Rum, Romanism, and Rebellion, 182. The Buffalo Courier
forced Ball to write a letter in which he admitted the falsity of some of
his claims. Nevins, Grover Cleveland: A Study in Courage, 163.
 See e.g., John B. Thompson, The Media and Modernity: A Social Theory
of the Media (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1995), 120-34.
 Summers, Rum, Romanism and Rebellion, 194-95.
 Munsey's Illustrated Weekly, 25 October 1884, 125.