National Archives Marks Election Season with Free Political Cartoon eBook
REPRESENTING CONGRESS: Clifford K. Berryman's Political Cartoons
Washington, DC. . . Just in time! To help make sense of Congress and its complexities, the National Archives Center for Legislative Archives today launched REPRESENTING CONGRESS: Clifford K. Berryman's Political Cartoons, a free eBook. Representing Congress goes beyond the headlines, using political cartoons to explore what Congress is, how it works, and what it does. The eBook's cartoons and learning resources engage students of all ages and illustrate how elected officials in the House and Senate represent the American people and fulfill the Founders' vision.
Representing Congress showcases Berryman's ability to use portraits, representative symbols and figures, and iconic personifications to help explain the institutions and issues of civic life. Each eBook page features a large political cartoon and links to related online materials, enticing visual learners and orienting students to the study of politics and government. These drawings highlight timeless aspects of Congress. While faces, personalities and many procedures change, these cartoons show that our representative institutions remain surprisingly consistent.
Related online resources:
Companion classroom lesson plan: Congress Represented in Political Cartoons
Additional Center for Legislative Archives Educational Resources
Clifford K. Berryman, staff political cartoonist for The Washington Post and the Washington Evening Star during the first half of the 20th century, drew thousands of cartoons commenting on the events, issues, and personalities of his era. Berryman was a Washington institution, and his 53 years of front-page drawings were internationally renowned. He satirized both Democratic and Republican political figures but was able to critique without rancor which won him great respect from many politicians. The original cartoons used in Representing Congress are part of a collection of nearly 2,400 drawings by Berryman from the U.S. Senate Collection housed in the Center for Legislative Archives in Washington, DC.
The Center for Legislative Archives—part of the National Archives—preserves and makes available to researchers the official records of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate. Educators can use these historical documents to teach about representative democracy, how Congress works, and the important role Congress has played throughout American history. Through its public outreach and educational programs, the Center uses these historical records to promote a better understanding of Congress and the history of American representative government. Online at www.archives.gov/legislative
The National Archives is an independent Federal agency that serves American democracy by safeguarding and preserving the records of our Government, ensuring that the people can discover, use, and learn from this documentary heritage. The National Archives ensures continuing access to the essential documentation of the rights of American citizens and the actions of their government. From the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights, to accounts of ordinary Americans, the holdings of the National Archives directly touch the lives of millions of people. The agency supports democracy, promote civic education, and facilitate historical understanding of our national experience. The National Archives carries out its mission through a nationwide network of archives, records centers, and Presidential Libraries, and online.