Exhibit Opening, “Edison & Ford Editorial Cartoons: Then and Now” at Edison Ford, September 6, 2012



Chris Pendleton, President & CEO
Lisa Sbuttoni, PR/Marketing Director

Photos: Clifford K. Berryman, portion of the cartoon, “Yes, We Have No Ambitions Today,” 1924; Doug MacGregor, “Ponce DeLeon Meets Thomas Edison,” News-Press, 2011.

Exhibit Opening, “Edison & Ford Editorial Cartoons: Then and Now” at Edison Ford, September 6, 2012

Fort Myers, FL (August 30, 2012) The Edison & Ford Winter Estates is opening a new exhibit, “Edison & Ford Editorial Cartoons: Then and Now,” on September 6, 2012 from 4 – 7 p.m. in the Edison Caretaker’s House.

The exhibit features a collection of editorial cartoons of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford from the 20th century into modern times with works from famous illustrators such as Joseph Keppler, J. N. ‘Ding’ Darling, and local editorial cartoonist Doug MacGregor, who for 25 years created weekly editorial cartoons for the Fort Myers News-Press. At 5:30 p.m. chief curator, Alison Giesen and MacGregor will lead a gallery tour with exhibit insight. The exhibit opening is free to the public and continues through February 2013. Reservations are required by calling 239-334-7419.

Editorial cartooning has been part of journalism for centuries. It has not only become a tradition, but more importantly, has been used to help shape America’s history. Historically the role of cartooning was a way to transfer information with differing viewpoints during a time when the majority of society was unable to read. With visual clues, cartoonists are able to create images to draw attention or to make statements about current events, issues and the people involved.

The first editorial cartoon in America was created by Benjamin Franklin in 1753 when he published the famous “Join or Die” image of a snake cut in to pieces representing the British Colonies. Today, even though many more people can read than in years past, the tradition of editorial cartooning has carried on. Where it may be considered politically incorrect or even illegal to write or say something about a person or event, pictures can allude to the truth without the editorial cartoonist having to write a single word.

No two figures of the twentieth century had more of an effect on the daily lives of Americans than Thomas Edison and Henry Ford. Between them they filed a total of 1,254 patents (1,093 for Thomas Edison, 161 for Henry Ford) for inventions ranging from the movie camera and the first incandescent light bulb to the Model T. Because of their fame these two men were very popular among editorial cartoonists for many decades.

The Edison Ford is open daily from 9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. The Edison Ford is the winner of the 2009 National Stewardship Award from the National Trust for Historic Preservation and is an official project of “Save America’s Treasures” at the National Trust for Historic Preservation, a Florida Historic Landmark and a National Register Historic Site. For additional information call 239-334-7419 or visit the web site at www.edisonfordwinterestates.org.

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