The First American Political Conventions
Transforming Presidential Nominations, 1832–1872
About the Book
For almost two centuries, Americans have relied upon political conventions to provide the nation with new leadership. The modern convention, a four-day, carefully choreographed, prime-time television event designed to portray the party and its candidate in the most favorable light, continues many of the traditions and rules developed during the first conventions in the mid–19th century.
This study analyzes the birth of the convention process in the 1830s and follows its development over 40 years, chronicling each of the presidential elections between 1832 and 1872, the leading candidates, and an analysis of the key issues, and memorable speeches and events on the convention floor. Other topics include back-room deal making, “dark horse” candidacies, meeting halls, parades, rallies, and other accompanying hoopla.
This volume reveals the origins of a quintessentially American spectacle and sheds new light on an understudied aspect of the nation’s political past.
About the Author(s)
Stan M. Haynes has practiced law with the Baltimore law firm of Semmes, Bowen & Semmes since 1983. He lives in Ellicott City, Maryland.
Stan M. Haynes
Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Bibliographic Info: 46 photos, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2012
Table of Contents
1. From Caucuses to Conventions 5
2. The Monumental City 10
3. 1832: Please Join Us, Mr. Carroll 19
4. 1836: Hey Buddy, Wanna Be a Delegate? 40
5. 1840: Keep the Ball Rolling 52
6. 1844: Texas Two-Step 67
7. 1848: New York, New York 91
8. 1852: Frank and Fuss and Feathers 106
9. 1856: New and Old: Parties in Transition 127
10. 1860: Two-Act Tragedy 143
11. 1864: Keeping the Same Horse 178
12. 1868: Let Us Have Peace 202
13. 1872: Strange Bedfellows 216
14. Conclusion 241
Book Reviews & Awards
“a handy reference…Haynes presents the party conventions of each presidential election year in briskly written form. Recommended”—Choice.