"Uncle Sam"   Lot no. 4185

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By James Montgomery Flagg (1877-1960)

16.00" x 13.00"
Pen and Ink on Paper
Signed and Dated Lower Left

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Signed, dedicated and dated lower left. "To Ruth Bryan Owen, Jan 14th, 1931". Image of Uncle Same pointing to a Woman Holding her Daughter on her lap".

This illustration may have appeared in the January 1931 issue of Good Housekeeping, the cover story was titled "Uncle Sam and the Children". Ruth Bryan Owen was originally known as Ruth Baird Bryan Leavitt Owen Rohde, a politician and the first woman appointed as a United States ambassador when FDR selected her.

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See all original artwork by James Montgomery Flagg



James Montgomery Flagg lived with gusto. He epitomized the public concept of the handsome, bohemian artist, surrounded by beautiful models, dashing off pictures with sheer exuberance of talent. In Flagg’s case, this was nearly true. He worked rapidly and easily in all media and with any subject matter. Humor and satire were his special forte.

Early in his career he did a cartoon entitled “Nervy Nat,” and for many years he illustrated the zany characters of the P. G. Wodehouse stories and created the prototypical interpretation of the valet, “Jeeves.” His rapid portrait studies and incisive caricatures were prized by many prominent sitters.

     For over thirty years he turned out an immense amount of work, including many posters during World War I. Probably his best known illustration was the famous “I Want You” Uncle Sam recruiting poster. Over four million copies of this were printed and distributed throughout the country.

   Flagg was a painter of serious portraits, too. He exhibited in the Paris salon of 1900, at the National Academy of Design, and the New York Watercolor Club. He was elected to the Illustrators Hall of Fame in 1980.