Jun 11, 2012

The Stephen Colbert of the Civil War

(NYTimes) “A nickel-plated son of a bitch.” That was how David R. Locke, an Ohio newspaperman and the most daring comedian of the Civil War, described his alter-ego: Petroleum Vesuvius Nasby. Locke’s persona made him the most influential humorist of the era.
His jokes seemed to be in everybody’s mouth, and he became so popular in England that readers there assumed all Americans spoke in Nasby’s tattered dialect. Continued

Photo: Portrait of P. V. (Petroleum Vesuvius) Nasby by Thomas Nast