Dang! Ding Darling Database

Okay, so it’s not “Hix Nix Stix Pix”. I tried. Anyway, there’s a new digital archive available for Jay Norwood (“Ding”) Darling and his editorial cartoons — over 10,000 of them, and some audio recordings as well. They’re available at

Ding Darling was not only an editorial cartoonist for almost 50 years, but was also once head of what is now the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, so what’s here is all over the map. (By the way, if you have a minute, read this site’s history. How the archivists dealt with the audio is great reading.)

The audio is off in its own section. You can listen to four clips of Darling’s dictation of correspondence.

Now the cartoons are both searchable and browsable. You can search by keyword, or you can browse by subject — topic, people, events, and depictions. You can also browse ALL the cartoons, but since there are over 10,000 of ’em, I’d skip that. I did a search for prohibition and got 422 results. Search results include a thumbnail, title of the cartoon, original date of issue (often a full date but sometimes only a month and year) and topic.

Click on the cartoon and you’ll get a much larger cartoon (but sometimes not large enough; Darling’s drawings are very detailed) with additional information including people mentioned (hyperlinked to lists of other cartoons), rights information, and the complete text of the cartoons, which is useful when you have cartoons like “Interviews that Never Happened”. The cartoons are not, unfortunately, large enough that the text is easy to read.

Some of these cartoons are very local, which left me completely lost, while some of them are interesting cultural lessons (search for fashion.) A fun browse.

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