Analyzing Political Cartoons
• Political Cartoons use some or all of these
– Important people (recognizable characters)
– Exaggerated details
– Labels (identification)
– Voice or thought bubbles
– A caption
Identify the Devices in the cartoon
Voice or thought bubbles
Caption (title of the cartoon)
• President Lincoln and Vice-President Johnson
are repairing the torn country at the end of
the Civil War.
Lincoln as rail splitter
• Lincoln once split rails for
the railroad. This image is
used often in
Andrew Johnson as tailor
• Andrew Johnson had apprenticed as a tailor
when he was a boy. Later he opened his own
• This explains why these two images are used
in this political cartoon.
• The thread symbolizes the programs used
during the Reconstruction (i.e. Freedman’s
Cartoons as Primary Sources
• Political cartoons are primary documents.
• They can tell us a lot about the time period we
You will interpret the cartoons in your packet.
Read the section that corresponds with the
cartoon and fill in the chart.