Happy Birthday Thomas Nast!! This German-American was born in 1840 and considered the Father of American Cartoon. He was born in Germany, where his father was a trombonist for the Bavarian regiment. His father later moved the family to New York when he enlisted in the service, serving on an American ship. Although he was a terrible student, Thomas Nast loved to draw from an early age and was hired as a draftsman for Harper’s Weekly. It is reported that he was responsible for the modern version of Santa Claus that we have today as well as Uncle Sam. He also came up with the donkey and elephant for the Democratic and Republican party icons.