As children, we all enjoy a good laugh. Many can recall their favorite cartoon. Political cartoons play an important role in shaping public opinion about various topics. Even today, political cartoons play an essential role in many aspects of politics.
During the time of the Civil War, political cartoons shaped opinions on both sides of the political spectrum on issues of slavery, states' rights, liberalism and conservatism, and specific public individuals. Even President Lincoln could not escape being the focal point of several political cartoons.
While there was nothing really funny about the Civil War the president as well as countless others found relief from the burdens and tensions of war through political cartoons. Often times, cartoons helped restore Lincoln's faith in the country's destiny. Through the prints, paintings, and sketches, the cartoons reduced their anxieties and grief.
For a lesson and activity relating to political cartoons, check out the Battle Plan for Lesson 4.