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Join, or Die

Join, or Die

Benjamin Franklin published this now-famous cartoon to make a political point. Released in his Pennsylvania Gazette—on the 9th of May, 1754—it is the earliest-known cartoon, used by a colonial American, to advocate union of Britain's American colonies.

The woodcut depicts a snake, divided into eighths, each bearing the initials of a colony or region. In addition to the cartoon, Franklin published an editorial about the "disunited state" of the British colonies.

The image is related to a superstition that if a snake were cut into pieces, it would become alive again if those pieces were rejoined before sunset.


Media Credits

Image, U.S. National Archives. Original woodcut created by an unknown artist.

 

To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"Join, or Die" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Oct 17, 2017.
       <https://www.awesomestories.com/asset/view/Join-or-Die/1>.
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