Political cartoon, "Shall I vote for ten cents a day?", satirizing 1856 presidential hopefuls appeals to the labor vote.
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A campaign parody somewhat favorable to Republican candidate John C. Fremont, but suggesting a conspiracy between Fremont and Millard Fillmore to defeat Democrat James Buchanan. Buchanan's nickname "Ten Cent Jimmy" was a derisive label applied to him by labor interests. In the background behind a fence Buchanan can be seen addressing a working-class gathering. "Gent[leme]n," he harangues them, "if you put me in, why I promise that you shall be on the same plan as the laborers of Europe, Ten Cents a Day." Fillmore crouches this side of the fence, watching. Fremont, with a carpenter's tools and smock, and shirtsleeves rolled, stands in the foreground. Fillmore (aside, to Fremont): "Monte, I've got my eye up on the old Buck–with such a crowd as he's got, he can't go in, I'll Bargain with you? If I can't win, why you shall." Fremont: "All right, agreed and if I don't win why you shall, but look here, If Ten Cent Jimmy wins we working men will have Ten Cents a Day. How are we to live? look at the price of provisions." To the left is a "Cheap grocery & provision store" offering pork at ten to eighteen cents per pound, "Fine Buck" at two and a half cents, cabbages at ten to twelve and a half cents each, and other produce at equally high rates. At right is the boardinghouse of "Mrs Woodbee Late Pierce" (no doubt a disparaging reference to Democratic incumbent Franklin Pierce) offering rooms to mechanics at three dollars per week. A scrawny dog barks at the door.

Credit: Dickinson College Archives and Special Collections

Slavery was not the only issue on voters" minds during the 1856 presidential election. In this cartoon published in Philadelphia, the artist satirized the Republican and Democratic candidates" appeals to northern workers. In the background "Ten Cent Jimmy," a derisive name given by labor advocates to Democratic nominee James Buchanan, promises a working class gathering he will put them "on the same plan as the laborers of Europe, Ten Cents a Day." In the foreground, Republican nominee John Fremont, dressed in a carpenter's smock cuts a bargain with former president James Fillmore, crouching behind the fence, who promises to throw his support behind Fremont if he can't beat Buchanan. On the left, a "Cheap grocery & provision store" offers pork, cabbages, and other produce at prices beyond the purchasing power of a working man making Buchanan's promised ten cents a day. On the right is the boardinghouse of "Mrs Woodbee Late Pierce" a disparaging reference to Democratic incumbent Franklin Pierce, which offers rooms to mechanics at an exorbitant three dollars a week.

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