New York: Printed & Published by H.R. Robinson, 1838. Handcolored lithograph, 11 1/4 x 18 3/4 inches. Worn along the left and right edges, with several small chips. Small closed tear in lower margin, just touching the imprint. Tanned, some spotting. Good. Matted. Item #WRCAM43177
A rare satirical political print, criticizing New York governor William L. Marcy, a Democrat, for his controversial decision to surrender the Irish fugitives, John Bamber, Sr. and his son James to the British consul after they had been detained in New York. In the caption title the "a" in Marcy's name has been crossed out and replaced with an "e." "The Bambers, wanted by the British government in connection with the killing of an Irish constable, had sought asylum in the United States. Marcy's decision to return them to British custody caused a furor among New York Whigs and Irish immigrants" - Reilly. The Bambers are shown in hand and leg irons, with Marcy holding ropes around their necks as he prepares to hand them over to the British consul. The Irishmen protest their fate ("Is this the boasted liberty of the soil? Is this the law for an adopted citizen?") while city recorder Richard Riker runs up waving a writ of habeas corpus, shouting "Stop! Stop!" Marcy has a patch on his trousers that reads "50 cents," a joke regarding a tailor's voucher for fifty cents that he submitted as an expense while governor. The British consul thanks Marcy, saying that he is sure Queen Victoria "will reward you with a pair of new breeches." The maker of this print, H.R. Robinson of New York, was known for producing satirical prints and caricatures, and Murrell calls him the most prolific designer and printer of caricatures and cartoons between the 1830s and '50s. His political satire was usually pro-Whig and anti- Democrat. OCLC locates only the copy, at the Library of Congress. Rare, and fine visual evidence of pro-Irish and anti-Democratic sentiment in New York. REILLY, AMERICAN POLITICAL PRINTS, 1838-5. WEITENKAMPF, p.55 OCLC 299944561.