<Go back to the People Index results>


FORDING SALT RIVER
   
Complete Explanation:
An election-year satire favoring Free Soil candidate Martin Van Buren in the 1848 presidential contest. A long-legged John Van Buren carries his father piggyback through Salt River, heading toward the White House on the far shore. "Matty" says, "Thanks to your long legs, John, I believe that I shall pass over this Jordan dry shod."

The younger Van Buren assures his father, "Hold on Dad & I'll put you through." Meanwhile, abolitionist editor Horace Greeley and candidates Taylor and Clay are having a more difficult time fording the river. Clay is immersed head first, leaving only his legs visible. Taylor is neck-deep in the water. Greeley yells to Kentucky Whig leader Cassius M. Clay, seated on the near bank, "Help, Cassius, or I Sink."

Clay replies, "Can't come there, Horace, I risked my life in Mexico, & I don't like to do it again." (Cassius Clay was a hero of the recent Mexican War).


Website design 2010 HarpWeek, LLC
All Content 1998-2010 HarpWeek, LLC
Please submit questions to webmaster@harpweek.com