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Photo, Print, Drawing Cleansing the Augean stable

[ digital file from b&w film copy neg. ]

About this Item


  • Cleansing the Augean stable


  • A pro-Whig satire, envisioning the cleansing of the "Augean Stable" of government corruption by presidential candidate Henry Clay and other Whigs. The title derives from one of the twelve mythical labors of Hercules. The hero was to clean King Augeas's stables, which had been inhabited for thirty years by three thousand oxen. The artist draws a parallel with the White House, held almost continuously since 1829 by the Democrats. The artist applauds Whig opposition to the annexation of Texas, illustrated by Virginia congressman Henry A. Wise's expulsion of "Madam Texas" at left. Wise says, "You will go about your business & lurk around these premises no longer. Your former master has forbidden all persons to harbor or trust you, & we shall not pay your debts for you." The "former master" was Mexico, who, though granting Texas its independence in 1836, still considered the Lone Star Republic a wayward province. With a pitchfork, Henry Clay tosses his Democratic counterpart James Polk out the window while incumbent President John Tyler throws George Dallas out the same window. Clay says, "It's all very well, Mr. Polk, but you can't come here." Andrew Jackson, poking his head in a nearby window exclaims, "By the eternal! We shan't know the old place, these fellows have gutted it so completely." To their left, Daniel Webster shovels out Thomas Hart Benton's gold coins, or "mint drops." Senator John C. Calhoun carries "fox" Van Buren toward the door, holding him unceremoniously upside-down by the tail. "Cleansing the Augean Stable" evidently appeared in the summer of 1844. (The Library's impression was deposited for copyright on July 10.) The appearance of Calhoun and Tyler, ostensibly on the side of the Whigs here, is puzzling. Calhoun and Tyler, both strong annexationists, had by this time lined up fairly decisively behind the Democratic candidates.


  • Baillie, James S., active 1838-1855.
  • Bucholzer, H.

Created / Published

  • 1844.


  • -  Benton, Thomas Hart,--1782-1858
  • -  Calhoun, John C.--(John Caldwell),--1782-1850
  • -  Clay, Henry,--1777-1852
  • -  Dallas, George Mifflin,--1792-1864
  • -  Jackson, Andrew,--1767-1845
  • -  Polk, James K.--(James Knox),--1795-1849
  • -  Tyler, John,--1790-1862
  • -  Van Buren, Martin,--1782-1862
  • -  Webster, Daniel,--1782-1852
  • -  Mexico--1840-1850
  • -  Presidential elections--United States--1840-1850
  • -  Secession--Texas--1840-1850


  • Lithographs--1840-1850.
  • Political cartoons--1840-1850.


  • Lithographs--1840-1850
  • Political cartoons--1840-1850


  • -  Drawn by H. Bucholzer.
  • -  Entered . . . 1844 by James Baillie.
  • -  Lithography & print coloring on reasonable terms by James Baillie No. 33 Spruce St. New York.
  • -  Title appears as it is written on the item.
  • -  Weitenkampf, p. 79.
  • -  Forms part of: American cartoon print filing series (Library of Congress)
  • -  Published in: American political prints, 1766-1876 / Bernard F. Reilly. Boston : G.K. Hall, 1991, entry 1844-35.


  • 1 print : lithograph with watercolor, on wove paper ; 30.1 x 44 cm. (image)

Call Number/Physical Location

  • PC/US - 1844.B157, no. 25 (B size) [P&P]

Source Collection

  • American cartoon print filing series (Library of Congress)


Digital Id

  • cph 3b03597 //

Library of Congress Control Number

  • 2008661436

Reproduction Number

  • LC-USZ62-55714 (b&w film copy neg.)

Rights Advisory

  • No known restrictions on publication.

Online Format

  • image

Additional Metadata Formats

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  • Rights Advisory: No known restrictions on publication.
  • Reproduction Number: LC-USZ62-55714 (b&w film copy neg.)
  • Call Number: PC/US - 1844.B157, no. 25 (B size) [P&P]
  • Access Advisory: ---

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Cite This Item

Citations are generated automatically from bibliographic data as a convenience, and may not be complete or accurate.

Chicago citation style:

Baillie, James S., Active, and H Bucholzer. Cleansing the Augean stable. United States Texas Mexico, 1844. Photograph.

APA citation style:

Baillie, J. S. & Bucholzer, H. (1844) Cleansing the Augean stable. United States Texas Mexico, 1844. [Photograph] Retrieved from the Library of Congress,

MLA citation style:

Baillie, James S., Active, and H Bucholzer. Cleansing the Augean stable. Photograph. Retrieved from the Library of Congress, <>.