Tuesday, November 22, 2022

Review of "As Ding Saw Hoover," by Jay N. Darling

 Review of

As Ding Saw Hoover, by Jay N. Darling

Four out of five stars

Output from a cartoonist friend

Jay N. Darling (tagline Ding) was a very talented editorial cartoonist of the early twentieth century, he produced nearly one a day for many years. In that field, he created flattering and unflattering images and text of major figures of the day. One of those people was Herbert Hoover in his many iterations as an administrator and as a president.

 The book opens with an introduction and then a chapter called, “My Association with Herbert Hoover,” written by Darling himself. In it, he makes it clear that he and Hoover were very good friends, doing many things together. It is clear that Darling was a strong supporter of Hoover, even when his political fortunes were declining due to the deepening Depression.

 The cartoons that appear in this collection are but a sampling of Darling’s output, but they all are laudatory of Hoover. The timeframe begins in 1917, when Hoover was appointed by President Wilson to head the Food Administration. The cartoons then follow Hoover’s public life with the last dated November 3, 1932, right before the presidential election. In that election, Franklin Roosevelt won in a landslide. Each cartoon is dated and has an explanatory page of text associated with it.

 This book is interesting for the positive way in which Hoover is depicted. Popular when he was elected, Hoover was pummeled by the economic forces and left office with his reputation shattered. Which is unfortunate, for he was without question one of the most capable administrators to ever be elected President.

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