cartoon in the October 17, 1863 issue of Harper’s
Weekly manifested the negative image that Union supporters had
of the French and British governments for their flirtation with
the Confederacy. It
also suggested the impact that the Russian visit was expected to
have on those two nations. In
the cartoon, Emperor Napoleon III (Louis Napoleon) of France and
John Bull, the personification of Britain, are pirates (corsairs,
in French) who are alarmed by the sight of the Russian fleet in
New York Harbor.
cartoon in the November 28 issue portrayed
President Abraham Lincoln as a physician who sends his errand boy,
Secretary of State William Seward, to cure the “Confederate
Rash” of his Southern patient with “Russia Salve”—a
reference to the visiting Russian fleet and perhaps to a possible
Russian-American alliance. Redding’s
Russia Salve was a popular ointment for skin-related maladies
advertised in the pages of Harper’s Weekly
and elsewhere. There
was also a popular song of the period entitled “The Russia Salve
Agent, or, Snook’s Scolding Wife” (c. 1857).
|Harper's Weekly References
October 17, 1863,
p. 672, c. 1-2
cartoon, “The Perplexed Pirates”
November 28, 1863, p. 768, c.
Things to a Head”
May 28, 1864, p.
351, c. 3
advertisement, Redding’s Russia Salve