Cover image for Prints of a New Kind: Political Caricature in the United States, 1789–1828 By Allison M. Stagg

Prints of a New Kind

Political Caricature in the United States, 17891828

Allison M. Stagg

Buy

$79.95 | Hardcover Edition
ISBN: 978-0-271-09332-1

$34.95 | Paperback Edition
ISBN: 978-0-271-09453-3

Available as an e-book

266 pages
7" × 10"
71 color/54 b&w illustrations
2023

Prints of a New Kind

Political Caricature in the United States, 17891828

Allison M. Stagg

Winner of the 2024 American Historical Print Collectors Society Ewell L. Newman Award

“Stagg’s description of the social nature of caricatures [is] fascinating. . . . [She] does excellent historical detective work in tracking down America’s earliest caricaturists.”

 

  • Description
  • Reviews
  • Bio
  • Table of Contents
  • Sample Chapters
  • Subjects
Prints of a New Kind details the political strategies and scandals that inspired the first generation of American caricaturists to share news and opinions with their audiences in shockingly radical ways. Complementing studies on British and European printmaking, this book is a survey and catalogue of all known American political caricatures created in the country’s transformative early years, as the nation sought to define itself in relation to European models of governance and artistry.

Allison Stagg examines printed caricatures that mocked events reported in newspapers and politicians in the United States’ fledgling government, reactions captured in the personal papers of the politicians being satirized, and the lives of the artists who satirized them. Stagg’s work fills a large gap in early American scholarship, one that has escaped thorough art-historical attention because of the rarity of extant images and the lack of understanding of how these images fit into their political context.

Featuring 125 images, many published here for the first time since their original appearance, and a comprehensive appendix that includes a checklist of caricature prints with dates, titles, artists, references, and other essential information, Prints of a New Kind will be welcomed by scholars and students of early American history and art history as well as visual, material, and print culture.

“Stagg’s description of the social nature of caricatures [is] fascinating. . . . [She] does excellent historical detective work in tracking down America’s earliest caricaturists.”
“Thoroughly engaging with a well-crafted narrative, Prints of a New Kind is a long-awaited study filling a significant void in the history of American print culture. Allison Stagg sets the stage for a modern and popularized notion of political satire. This elegantly written book, lavishly illustrated, places the American tradition of caricature as separate from its European origins, with its own merits and history worthy of detailed examination.”
Prints of a New Kind contributes fresh awareness and understanding of early US political caricature from an art historical perspective. By doggedly tracing the locations of early caricatures in numerous archives on both sides of the Atlantic, Stagg has uncovered previously unknown examples and made new discoveries about the making and circulation of political caricatures in the early American Republic.”
“By highlighting the surprisingly robust market for caricatures, and intense competition for readership among publications in the Early Republic, this book is a welcome addition to the canon.”

Allison M. Stagg is a researcher and lecturer in the Department of Architecture and Art History at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany.

List of Illustrations

Acknowledgements

Introduction

1. Caricature in the United States, 1789–1820

2. James Akin’s Career Before Caricature

3. America’s First Caricaturist

4. The Business of Caricature in the 1810s

5. Copperplate to Lithography, 1820–1830

Conclusion: “The First Will Grumble and the Last Will Laugh”

Appendix: Catalogue of Caricatures Published in America Between 1780 and 1828

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Download a PDF sample chapter here: Introduction