“Benito’s Lesson”


“Benito’s Lesson” (Fall, 1943) 1/13
by Jacob Glushakow (1914-2000)
11.5 x 15 in., ink on board
Coppola Collection

Jacob Glushakow was a famous Jewish artist who lived in Baltimore, MD, who spent most of his life creating numerous drawings of the Baltimore area. He graduated from the Baltimore City College high school in 1933 and went on to the Maryland Institute College of Art and the Art Students League in New York, where he studied from 1933 to 1936. Jacob enlisted in the Air Force (December 17, 1941) and eventually served as a sergeant in England. On his enlistment materials, he is listed as an artist.

Jacob was initially trained and stationed at the Davis-Monthan (D-M) Air Force Base in Tucson, AZ. There are local newspaper reports in the Tucson Daily from June 11, 1942 (a painting of the Air Base selected to appear in the issue of Life Magazine during the first week of July); June 17, 1942 (painting signs for an Benefit Dance); and October 9, 1942 (a portrait of MacArthur unveiled, and working on a mural).

I have four of his cartoons, which I conclude were done for the Davis-Monthan Base newspaper. They say “Davis-Monthan” or “D-M Field” along with his name. One of them has a printing order sticker on the back with Davis-Monthan as the source. And if you look at the inferences you might draw from the topics in the cartoons, they could all reasonably fall in the last half of 1943, although that is speculation. They are not dated and there is no source publication to check. I also speculate that these must have been in his material belongings and released to auction by the family after he died. The Maryland Historical Society and the Jewish Museum of Maryland both have his works featured.

This cartoon looks pretty clearly to be the summer/fall of 1943. After the successful Allied campaign in North Africa, the threats to invade Italy began in May. The Allies followed through, taking Sicily in an assault that began on July 10. And on September 3, the invasion of the Italian peninsula began. The surrender had been pre-arranged, and was formally announced on September 8.

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