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Fan comprised of photos of individuals and flags to commemorate the war.

Spanish-American War Patriotic Fan

This nineteenth-century fan features portraits of U.S. military leaders of the Cuban campaign. It is an unusual example of how these figures were popularized in consumer culture. The portraits are, from left to right: Theodore Roosevelt, John C. Watson, William R. Shafter, William McKinley, Charles Dwight Sigsbee, Winfield Schley, Robley Evans, and Richmond P. Hobson. 

The fan is made from nine separate paper leaves that are lined with fabric and attached to wooden sticks. The paper leaves are in the shape of pansies, with embossing that imitates petals. One of the flowers features an abstracted flag of the United States on one side and a similarly abstracted flag of Cuba on the other. According to the Oxford Dictionary of English, in 1899, the word “pansy” meant “a remarkable or outstanding person.”

Unidentified artist
Lithograph, wood, and metal
17.8 × 35.6 cm (7 × 14 in.)
Private collection