|Click on these images to see them in larger form. They are two sides of one 8" x 10" broadside.
The two raffles advertised here for the benefit of Oscar Neebe and his three children were among several means by which funds were raised for the families of the executed and imprisoned men. The Neebes' situation was especially moving, since the children had lost their mother five months after their father was convicted. Another important source of income was the several publications produced by the Socialistic Publishing Association and other groups, as well as by individuals, most notably Lucy Parsons.
In this bilingual broadside, a number of details are of interest. The items being raffled—a "hand-made, Nickel-plated, new Pattern" harness, and "a handsome hand-made, artistically carved" gentleman's riding saddle—are described as having been manufactured in the saddle and harness shops of the Joliet Penitentiary. The poster does not state that Neebe, who was serving fifteen years at hard labor, had any role in fashioning the two items, but the advertisement for the harness says that it was made "during the time in which Oscar W. Neebe and his cellmate were not occupied with their regular duties within the last six months." This may refer to their regular duties within the prison, or, more sarcastically, to the "regular duties" outside that Neebe's conviction interrupted.
The harness was on exhibition at a North Side saloon at the corner of Mohawk and Clybourn, where the raffle was to take place on June 15, 1889. The saddle was raffled a week later in the same locations, after being on display at several turners, or German athletic organizations, which also served as social centers.