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THE LITTLE MAGICIAN & THE MODERN WITCH OF ENDOR.

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Another satire on Van Buren's alliance with extremists, here personified by radical abolitionist Abby Folsom. Van Buren's emergence as candidate of the Free Soil party in the 1848 presidential race was viewed as a reversal of his earlier administration stand on the issue. By invoking the specter of Benedict Arnold here the artist may also be criticizing Van Buren's repudiation of the regular Democratic party.

On the left the ghost of Revolutionary War turncoat Benedict Arnold has emerged from his grave. He points threateningly toward "Abby Fulsome" (center) and Van Buren (right), and says, "Why hast thou disquieted me, to bring me up? Behold the Government is rent from thee, & is given to thy neighbor, even to [Democratic presidential nominee Lewis] "Cass." The Buffaloes will be delivered into the hand of thine enemies, & thou and thy Son shall be with me." The print must date between Van Buren's nomination at the Free Soil party convention, held in early August 1848 at Buffalo, N.Y., and Zachary Taylor's electoral victory over Cass in November.

Van Buren and "Fulsome" recoil in horror at the sight of the spirit. Folsom observes, "An old man cometh up and he is covered with a mantle." Van Buren responds, "Our sufferings "is" intolerable." The quote was a well-known grammatical lapse of Van Buren's, widely exploited by the opposition during his term of office.

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Current Print >> 70 of 89:  1848

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