April 3rd, 2009
This is political cartoon, entitled “We Draw the Line At This” from the December 1893 edition of Judge, a weekly satire magazine [source]. Judge was founded in 1881 as a political satire magazine. [source]
In it depicts an extreme caricature of Queen Lili’uokalani the last monarch of Hawaii. Soldiers from all sections of the U.S. military are holding up a disc with their bayonets. Sitting on this platform is the queen with bare feet, an askew crown with feathers, and holding papers saying “gross immorality” and “scandalous government.” In analyzing the picture many things come to mind. The feathers, first, seem to resemble a Native American head dress. The Queen’s face is perhaps the most telling: her big lips and eyes, over emphasized to relate her ’subhuman nature’. This demonstrates the mindset of many Americans during this time in regards to the native population of Hawaii.
Here is a picture of Queen Lili’uokalani on her throne looking very regal, a far cry from the previous picture [source]:
Queen Lili’uokalani did not spend much time ruling Hawaii. She became the monarch after her brother died in 1893 until the U.S. removed her from the throne in 1894. During this short period and for years after, she tried to restore life for native Hawaiians back to its former glory when the Hawaiians were the ruling class and the outsiders could not own land. It was in 1893 that the U.S. Marines were sent to Hawaii. Some white sugar farmers then seized this opportunity to stage a coup and the queen was put under house arrest. [source] Lili’uokalani tried to petition the U.S. government to not annex Hawaii but to no avail. President McKinley signed the papers on July 7, 1898. [source]