New Library of Congress Book Features Historical Presidential Campaign Posters

Posted on May 5, 2012

Presidential Campaign Posters

Presidential campaign posters are featured in a new book, Presidential Campaign Posters From the Library of Congress. Drawn from the Library’s collection of more than 100,000 posters covering a wide variety of subjects, 100 ready-to-frame campaign posters about politicians from Andrew Jackson to Barack Obama are included in the book. Each of the posters is backed with historical commentary and additional artwork from their respective campaigns.

Media analyst Brooke Gladstone in the book's preface, "Political art is nothing less than an illustration of the skirmishes and stalemates that created and continue to animate the American experiment … Fortunately, the Library of Congress has preserved all of these examples for future generations to see."

Some of the posters in the book show Andrew Jackson portrayed as a king to invoke voters' memories of royal rule; Jimmy Carter as a Christ-like savior of his nation; Gerald Ford as "The Fonz" ("Fordsie") keeping his cool against Reagan during the 1976 primaries; and Ronald Reagan as "Rambo" ("Ronbo") ready to attack communists. Others feature campaign slogans such as Dwight Eisenhower's "We Like Ike," "Nixon's the One," and Barack Obama's one-word message, "Hope."

Photo: Quirk Books