A Blowin’ On His Nose

an Campaign Bandanna
Grover Cleveland/Allen Thurman Campaign Bandanna


In ’76 a patriot band —
The brave, the tried and true-
Unfurled our standard to the breezes
The dear red, white and blue.

In ’61, o’er loyal hosts,
Our ensign kissed the breeze,
While the “old bandanna” stifled
Thurman’s Hyperborean sneeze.

In ’64, ‘midst battle smoke,
Our flag of all the free
Waved proudly o’er brave Harrison,
With Sherman, to the sea.

In ’87, when Cleveland said
The rebel flags should go,
Old Allen G. unfurled his rag
And calmly took a blow.

One is the emblem of free trade
And rampant anarchy;
The other floats throughout the land,
The ensign of the free.

And when you know the use of each
The contrast wider grows;
One fires the patriotic heart —
The other wipes the nose.

— C. E. Blossom,



’76 would have been 1776; the American Revolution.  We’re comparing the American flag with Thurman’s handkerchief.

’61 would have been 1861, the American Civil War.  Thurman opposed the war.  He was also noted for his frequent head-colds, and for frequently blowing his nose on a red bandanna which he carried for the purpose.  He also waved his bandanna about while making oratorical points.  “Hyperborean” means of or pertaining to the extreme north.

’64 would have been 1864, when Benjamin Harrison, by then a brevet general, took part in the Atlanta campaign under Sherman.  (Later, Sherman’s brother, John, sponsored the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, which Harrison signed.)

’87 would have been 1887, in Cleveland’s first term; when he said “The rebel flags should go” what is being referred to is Cleveland trying to get captured Confederate flags returned to the units that had lost them.  This still hasn’t happened…..

Allen G. is Allen G. Thurman.  (Thurman’s supporters showed their support by displaying red bandannas.)

The Democrats (and Thurman) favored Free Trade.

Tomorrow: The Red, White and Blue.



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