The central, seated figure represents Provost William Leslie, to whom the image is dedicated. Aberdeen town council at this time were Liberal. The Party of Progress were clearly not as progressive as they wished the town to believe. The image shows that Aberdonians were particularly unhappy with their wages and felt that if the 'party' were not progressive in outlook, then they should not be progressive in title.
Amongst their members was James William Barclay, who had led the party of progress. He stood, unsuccessfully, in the 1872 by-election caused by the death of Colonel Sykes.