CLS: Tom Culbertson
Thomas Nast: America’s Favorite Political Cartoonist
Most Americans are familiar with Santa Claus, Uncle Sam, the republican elephant and the democrat donkey. These and several other icons were created or popularized by Thomas Nast during his long cartooning career from 1860 to 1902. Nast came to America at age six speaking no English and he received little formal education. These handicaps did not keep him from becoming the most popular and well known political cartoonist of his era and perhaps all time. He is still one of the most imitated cartoonists to this day. This talk is an overview of Thomas Nast’s life and career.
Thomas Culbertson was raised in Moline, Illinois and St. Louis Missouri. He earned a B.A. in History from Knox College and a Master of Information Science from Syracuse University. From 1970 to 1972 he served as a lieutenant in the United States Army. He was a college librarian at Buena Vista College for four years followed by nine years as a stockbroker in Fremont, Ohio. In 1988 he began a twenty-four career at the Rutherford B. Hayes Library and Museums in Fremont, Ohio. He retired as Executive Director in 2012. He is the author of Rutherford B. Hayes: A Life of Service. His academic interests are Reconstruction, the Gilded Age, and political cartooning. Since 2016 he and his wife, Mary Anne, have lived in Westlake, Ohio, where he builds furniture, plays golf, travels, and reads to keep busy.