Straight for the "ugh" | Vintage anti-Irish cartoons

As part of a series of posts on the racial attitudes that drove the United States into the Civil War, blogger Ta-Nehisi Coates has posted a small but powerful gallery of 19th-century anti-Irish cartoons and illustrations. As gorgeously drawn -- by the all-time-great political cartoonist Thomas Nast in some cases -- as they are jaw-droppingly benighted, they're posted by Coates to demonstrate the ease with which today's interested readers can access primary documents rather than relying on the potentially biased work of interpreters. Another silver lining: Given the total assimilation of Irish Americans, they're proof that even the most stridently held prejudices can fall before their twin opponents truth and time.

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