Satire on the presidential campaign of 1836, portraying the contest as a boxing match between Democratic candidate Martin Van Buren and Whig candidate William Henry Harrison. The artist clearly favors Harrison. The work is a variation on an 1834 cartoon which uses the boxing match as a metaphor for the struggle between Andrew Jackson and Nicholas Biddle, president of the Bank of the United States. (See "Set To Between Old Hickory and Bully Nick," no. 1834-4).
In a ring Van Buren and Harrison spar as their seconds and a crowd of observers stand by. On the left, Van Buren is seconded by Andrew Jackson and "bottle holder" Amos Kendall. On the right, Harrison's second is a "Western lad" (a frontiersman in buckskins) and his bottle holder "Old Seventy-six" (a lame Revolutionary war veteran). The text below the scene identifies Harrison's backers as "the People" and Van Buren's as "Office holders & mail Contractors."
Kendall (drinking from the bottle): "I begin to tremble for Matty -- There appears to be a Surplus Fund in this Bottle, so I'll een take a pull to raise my spirits. . ."
Jackson: "By the Eternal! what a severe counter hit! It's bunged up Matty's peeper, and if he don't keep his other eye open he'ill get a Cross buttock. He begins to be a little queerish already. D--n his Dutch courage! Amos where's the Bottle? after this Round put some more into him."
Van Buren: "Stand by me Old Hickory or I'm a gone Chicken!"
Harrison: "Look out for your bread-basket Matty, I'll remove the deposits for you." Jackson's words recall his controversial 1834 order to withdraw federal funds or "deposits" from the Bank of the United States.
Frontiersman: "Whoop! wake snakes!. . . he [Harrison] puts it into him as fast as a streak of greased lightning through a gooseberry bush. That "Cold blooded" Kinderhooker will be row'd up Salt River or I'm a nigger!"
Old Seventy-six: "Thank Heaven the People have a Champion at last who will support the Constitution and laws that we fought and bled to obtain. . ."