Illustration of a sign-wearing man with a white beard, dark glasses and a yellow hat with black band, with black text and black signature over a blue and white background.
Quality Tokio Cigarette
Factory No 649
1st Dist. NEW YORK
THE WHITEHEAD & HOAG CO.
The illustrator of this button, Rube Goldberg, is synonymous with complicated inventions that perform simple tasks (Goldberg's signature is featured on the button). An engineer and inventor, Goldberg also drew several comic series, including Mike and Ike (They Look Alike), Boob McNutt, and The Weekly Meeting of the Tuesday Women's Club. In the series featuring Professor Lucifer Gorgonzola Butts, Goldberg drew schematics of the comical gadgets by which he came to be known. .
Goldberg was a founding member and first president of the National Cartoonists Society, whose Reuben Award for cartoonist of the year is named after him. He received a Pulitzer Prize for his political cartooning in 1948, and in 1995 was honored with a commemorative stamp as part of the "Comic Strip Classics" series from the U.S. Postal Service.
This button was part of a set of 376 known, issued as premiums primarily with Hassan and Tokio cigarettes. They featured cartoons by artists such as as Rube Goldberg, George McManus, Bud Fisher, Hal Hoffman, and others.