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  1. Portrait of Clifford Berryman - Click to Enlarge
  2. Clifford Berryman Self Portrait - Click to Enlarge
  3. Drawing the Line in Mississippi - Cartoon featuring Berryman’s iconic teddy bear

“Two Bees or Not Two Bees—That is the Question!”
October 28, 1906

Theodore Roosevelt became President in 1901 after the assassination of William McKinley, just six months into their term. After winning the 1904 election, Roosevelt announced he would honor the two-term tradition by retiring in 1909. However, Roosevelt proved immensely popular and supporters urged him to run for an unprecedented third term. In this cartoon Roosevelt, dressed as Hamlet, stages an alternative rendition of the famous Shakespearian soliloquy. With the first- and second-term Presidential bees behind him, Roosevelt looks to the third-term bee and wonders, “Two bees or not two bees—that is the question!”

U.S. Senate Collection
Center for Legislative Archives

From Berryman’s Recurring Cast of Characters...

The bee was a common character in Berryman‘s cartoons representing political aspirations as the “buzz” in a potential candidate‘s ear Berryman used the bee to symbolize the lure of political office. See more of Berryman’s Recurring Symbolic Characters