The Cambridge History of English and American Literature in 18 Volumes (1907–21).
VOLUME XVI. Early National Literature, Part II; Later National Literature, Part I.

XIX. Early Humorists

§ 4. The New Humour of the Thirties

About the time of Andrew Jackson, along with the birth of popular national self-consciousness, the emergence of the frontier as a social entity in the nation’s imagination, and the rise to power of the newspaper (for almost without exception the professional American humorists have been newspapermen), the kind of humour that we think of as American took on new life. It first found voice in New England, the section which was eventually to shudder at the tide of boisterous, outlandish mirth that set in from the new South and the newer West, along and beyond that “highway of humour,” the Mississippi.