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Happy birthday american editorial cartooning

Benjamin Franklin's Join or Die cartoon

Today marks the 258th anniversary of Benjamin Franklin’s “Join or Die” cartoon – often thought of as the first editorial cartoon in the Americas. It was published in the Pennsylvania Gazette as a rallying cry unity among the colonies.

May the profession continue for many more years and cartoons with labels many more years beyond that.

Community Comments

#1 RYAN BROWN
May/9/2012
@ 8:01 am

Congrats!! I love the funny satire of editorial cartooning. It never matters whether I agree or disagree with a cartoon, because the true beauty of any editorial cartoon are how good the gags are and how they’re constructed.

#2 Jim Lavery
May/9/2012
@ 9:13 am

While clearly Franklin included labeling in this first EdToon he at least should be applauded for refraining from cross-hatching.

#3 Stacy Curtis
May/9/2012
@ 10:00 am

I don’t get it.

#4 Jim Lavery
May/9/2012
@ 10:18 am

somehow, over the years, labeling on and cross-hatching in EdToons became WRONG

#5 Dave Stephens
May/9/2012
@ 3:00 pm

Dunno about labeling, but crosshatching is not the easiest thing to do well and additionally has a history dating back to 1450 and before while hatching itself dates back to 1300… Nothing wrong with any technique in art if it is executed well.

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