Dr. Almus Pickerbaugh, Director of Public Health in Nautilus, Iowa, is a caricature of the medical world as Babbitt is of the business world. Preposterous and exuberant, he considers himself just a little below Tennyson as a versifier and a duplicate of Theodore Roosevelt in appearance. His outrageous health jingles are widely copied and repeated, for example:
You can’t get health
By a pussyfoot stealth,
So let’s every health-booster
Crow just like a rooster.
Yet Pickerbaugh would make clean the outside of the cup in Nautilus, while unsanitary conditions persisted beneath the surface, for fear of making enemies. Martin saw through this situation at once. More Pickerbaugh satire is concerned with his overwhelming election to Congress and his triumphant exit from Nautilus, accompanied by his wife and eight daughters.