A diverse group of abolitionists try to drag an unwilling black man toward the left with a large gaff hook. Holding the hook are (left to right) an old hag, a Quaker man, and two other homely men. The hag declares, "How perverse our dear colored brother is, I shall break my wind if I pull much longer." The Quaker says, "Verily it is hard work to set this Ethiopian at liberty. I fear we must break his back before we can succeed." A woman behind him enjoins "Pull on brethren till you have broken every yoke."
Another young woman (center) asks the black, "Don't you feel the blessings of liberty?" The black protests, "Bress my soul, Massa Robolition, why you kidnap me 'way from Massa Clay? Let poor nigger go 'bout his bizness, and hab his own way dis once, and I berry glad."
The black struggles to join Henry Clay and Horace Greeley, on the right, who stand with hands joined. The elderly Clay stands leaning on his cane. Greeley, in top hat and white coat, points toward the right and advises Clay, "Don't look behind you, friend Harry, but come and see my crack article on the Tariff."
Weitenkampf dates the cartoon 1851, on the basis of the reference to Greeley's support of trade protectionism. The apparent double entendre of the word "hook" in the title is puzzling.