Magazine Illustrations


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The first visualizations of Faulkner's Yoknapatawpha fictions were the illustrations drawn to accompany the publication of his short stories in magazines like The Saturday Evening Post, Scribner's and Collier's, the large circulation periodicals that Faulkner regularly submitted work to in his quest for income. Although Faulkner occasionally worked directly with the magazines' editors to revise a story, there is no evidence that he had any control over - or even interest in - the way these magazines illustrated his texts. The illustrations can, however, help us appreciate the way Faulkner's world, and the people of different races and classes who inhabit it, appeared to his original readers.

The following items are drawn from the William Faulkner Foundation Collection at the University of Virginia's Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library (
Click on any image to see an enlargement.

“Two Soldiers”

The illustrations for "Two Soldiers" - or, as the magazine chose to title it, "2 Soldiers" - were drawn by Harold Von Schmidt. He depicts the Grier family with a lot more dignity than they have in the illustrations Floyd Davis drew for "Shingles for the Lord," published in the Post a year later. The larger, two-color illustration (below center) is a little faded, but you can still see how Von Schmidt represents the story's young protagonist marching toward Memphis against the background of Americans who have fought in the country's earlier wars.

Page 9, 28 March 1942 Saturday Evening Post     Page 10, 28 March 1942 Saturday Evening Post     Page 11, 28 March 1942 Saturday Evening Post

Below left: a composite of pages 10-11. Below right: Probably by design, the Post published a recruiting ad for the United States Army on the page that faced the story's first page.

Pages 10-11, 28 March 1942 Saturday Evening Post     Page 8, 28 March 1942 Saturday Evening Post

      Citing this source:
Stephen Railton, "Illustrating '2 Soldiers,'" Digital Yoknapatawpha, University of Virginia,   (Date added to project: 2018)
Illustrations © The Saturday Evening Post.