Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Snake Worship in the USA-Picture News-1945

Here's yet another fascinating slice of life from 1946, drawn by an unknown artist in PICTURE NEWS. This one tells the story of a popular Governor and his holier than thou troopers stamping out snake handling religions in Virginia in the 1940's. I'm not saying the snake handlers weren't a bit naive and ill-educated but it's hard to root for the brown-shirted troops who bust up a religious ceremony and start shooting...and yet they're the heroes of the piece! According to Wikipedia, snake handling is still in practice today in Alabama, Kentucky and a few other Southern states, albeit illegally. It is, however, completely LEGAL in West Virginia. Apparently the troopers did well way back then, though, as there is NO mention of snake handling in Virginia anymore.


Nick Caputo said...

The distinctive lettering, and parts of the art, look like the work of Bill Everett. This could either be a rushed out job, or a job in collaboration with other hands.

Aklo said...

Wow. I may not think that a snake bite will cure everything, but to shut them down in the name of the 'law' was not truly lawful. Freedom of religion was completely violated and those folks were oppressed in a tyrannical fashion.