Mental Floss
ENTERTAINMENT

12 American Propaganda Posters That Sold World War I to the Masses

Shaunacy Ferro
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.147
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.147 /
facebooktwitterreddit

A new exhibit at the Museum of the City of New York features rarely seen propaganda art commissioned by the U.S. government during World War I.

Propaganda is central to any war effort. In the early 20th century, the persuasion to head into battle came, in part, from art: The government recruited artists and illustrators to create propaganda materials. In a new exhibit, the Museum of the City of New York is showing how New York City-based artists and creatives working for the federal government’s Division of Pictorial Publicity helped sell World War I to the public.

Posters and Patriotism: Selling World War I in New York showcases a collection of more than 60 mass-produced propaganda posters from the era—some on display for the first time—that the railroad millionaire John W. Campbell donated to the museum in 1943. They make up just a small sample of the 20 million copies of approximately 2500 posters that the government distributed around the U.S.

1. "ENLIST" BY FRED SPEAR, 1915

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.147
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.147 /

this is caption

2. "JEWISH WELFARE BOARD" BY JOSEF FOSHKO, C. 1917

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.240
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.240 /

3. "I WANT YOU FOR U.S. ARMY" BY JAMES MONTGOMERY FLAGG, C. 1917

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.142
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.142 /

4. "CLEAR THE WAY!!" BY HOWARD CHANDLER CHRISTY, C. 1917

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.56
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.56 /


5. "TO-DAY BUY THAT LIBERTY BOND" BY UNKNOWN ARTIST, C. 1917

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.4
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.4 /

6. “PER LA LIBERAZIONE SOTTOSCRIVETE! (FOR LIBERATION SUBSCRIBE TO THE NATIONAL LOAN!)” BY ACHILLE MAUZAN, 1918

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.564
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.564 /

7. “REMEMBER! THE FLAG OF LIBERTY SUPPORT IT!” BY HEYWOOD, STRASSER & VOIGHT LITHO CO. (NEW YORK, N.Y.), 1918

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.35
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.35 /

8. “LEST WE PERISH” BY ETHEL FRANKLIN BETTS BAINS, 1917-18

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.109
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.109 /


9. “TREAT 'EM ROUGH” BY AUGUST WILLIAM HUTAF, C. 1918

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.178
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.178 /

10. “HELP THE RED CROSS” BY HERMAN ROEG, 1918

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.93
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.93 /

11. “FOR EVERY FIGHTER A WOMAN WORKER” BY ADOLPH TREIDLER, C. 1918

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.123
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.123 /

12. “EVERY GIRL PULLING FOR VICTORY” BY EDWARD PENFIELD, 1918

MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.131
MUSEUM OF THE CITY OF NEW YORK, GIFT OF MR. JOHN W. CAMPBELL, 43.40.131 /

Posters and Patriotism: Selling World War I in New York opens April 5. 

facebooktwitterreddit