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1872 Republican Convention - History

1872 Republican Convention - History

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1872 republican Convention

Academy of Music, Philadelphia,, Pennsylvania

June 5 to 6, 1872

Nominated: Uysses S Grant of Ill for President

Nominated: Henry Wilson of Massachusetts for Vice President

When the Republicans met in Philadelphia on June 5th there was only one candidate and that was Grant. Grant's critics in the party had already split from the Republicans and created the Liberal Republican Party.

1872 Republican National Convention

The 1872 Republican National Convention was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, June 5–6, 1872. President Ulysses S. Grant was unanimously nominated for a second term by the convention's 752 delegates. Vice-President Schuyler Colfax was for some time considered a potential rival to Grant for the nomination, and had declared himself open to the prospect should Grant decide not to run for a second term, a stance that alienated him from both the President and his many supporters. Further damage resulted when a small movement within the Liberal Republican Party sought to enter his name for their presidential nomination. While neither amounted to more than speculation, it likely cost him his chances for renomination. Colfax narrowly missed the mark, garnering 321.5 delegates to Massachusetts Senator Henry Wilson's 399.5, President Grant being among those many notables who remained on the sidelines as the balloting had taken place.

Republican Party Platform of 1876

When, in the economy of Providence, this land was to be purged of human slavery, and when the strength of government of the people by the people and for the people was to be demonstrated, the Republican party came into power. Its deeds have passed into history, and we look back to them with pride. Incited by their memories, and with high aims for the good of our country and mankind, and looking to the future with unfaltering courage, hope, and purpose, we, the representatives of the party, in national convention assembled, make the following declaration of principles:—

1. The United States of America is a nation, not a league. By the combined workings of the national and state governments, under their respective constitutions, the rights of every citizen are secured at home and abroad, and the common welfare promoted.

2. The Republican party has preserved these governments to the hundredth anniversary of the nation's birth, and they are now embodiments of the great truth spoken at its cradle, that all men are created equal that they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness that for the attainment of these ends governments have been instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. Until these truths are cheerfully obeyed, and if need be, vigorously enforced, the work of the Republican party is unfinished.

3. The permanent pacification of the Southern section of the Union and the complete protection of all its citizens in the free enjoyment of all their rights, are duties to which the Republican party is sacredly pledged. The power to provide for the enforcement of the principles embodied in the recent constitutional amendments is vested by those amendments in the Congress of the United States and we declare it to be the solemn obligation of the legislative and executive departments of the government to put into immediate and vigorous exercise all their constitutional powers for removing any just causes of discontent on the part of any class, and securing to every American citizen complete liberty and exact equality in the exercise of all civil, political, and public rights. To this end we imperatively demand a congress and a chief executive whose courage and fidelity to these duties shall not falter until these results are placed beyond dispute or recall.

4. In the first act of congress, signed by President Grant, the national government assumed to remove any doubt of its purpose to discharge all just obligations to the public creditors, and solemnly pledged its faith "to make provisions at the earliest practicable period, for the redemption of the United States notes in coin." Commercial prosperity, public morals, and the national credit demand that this promise be fulfilled by a continuous and steady progress to specie payment.

5. Under the constitution, the President and heads of departments are to make nominations for office, the senate is to advise and consent to appointments, and the house of representatives is to accuse and prosecute faithless officers. The best interest of the public service demands that these distinctions be respected that senators and representatives who may be judges and accusers should not dictate appointments to office. The invariable rule for appointments should have reference to the honesty, fidelity, and capacity of the appointees, giving to the party in power those places where harmony and vigor of administration require its policy to be represented, but permitting all others to be filled by persons selected with sole reference to the efficiency of the public service and the right of citizens to share in the honor of rendering faithful service to their country.

6. We rejoice in the quickened conscience of the people concerning political affairs. We will hold all public officers to a rigid responsibility, and engage that the prosecution and punishment of all who betray official trusts shall be speedy, thorough, and unsparing.

7. The public school system of the several states is the bulwark of the American republic and, with a view to its security and permanence, we recommend an amendment to the constitution of the United States, forbidding the application of any public funds or property for the benefit of any school or institution under sectarian control.

8. The revenue necessary for current expenditures and the obligations of the public debt must be largely derived from duties upon importations, which, so far as possible, should be so adjusted as to promote the interests of American labor and advance the prosperity of the whole country.

9. We reaffirm our opposition to further grants of the public lands to corporations and monopolies, and demand that the national domain be devoted to free homes for the people.

10. It is the imperative duty of the government so to modify existing treaties with European governments, that the same protection shall be afforded to the adopted American citizen that is given to native-born, and all necessary laws be passed to protect emigrants, in the absence of power in the states for that purpose.

11. It is the immediate duty of congress fully to investigate the effects of the immigration and importation of Mongolians on the moral and material interests of the country.

12. The Republican party recognizes with approval the substantial advances recently made toward the establishment of equal rights for women, by the many important amendments effected by Republican legislatures in the laws which concern the personal and property relations of wives, mothers, and widows, and by the appointment and election of women to the superintendence of education, charities, and other public trusts. The honest demands of this class of citizens for additional rights, privileges, and immunities should be treated with respectful consideration.

13. The constitution confers upon congress sovereign power over the territories of the United States for their government. And in the exercise of this power it is the right and duty of congress to prohibit and extirpate in the territories that relic of barbarism, polygamy and we demand such legislation as will secure this end and the supremacy of American institutions in all the territories.

14. The pledges which our nation has given to our soldiers and sailors must be fulfilled. The grateful people will always hold those who imperilled their lives for the country's preservation in the kindest remembrance.

15. We sincerely deprecate all sectional feeling and tendencies. We therefore note with deep solicitude that the Democratic party counts, as its chief hope of success, upon the electoral vote of a united South, secured through the efforts of those who were recently arrayed against the nation and we invoke the earnest attention of the country to the grave truth, that a success thus achieved would reopen sectional strife and imperil national honor and human rights.

16. We charge the Democratic party with being the same in character and spirit as when it sympathized with treason with making its control of the house of representatives the triumph and opportunity of the nation's recent foes with reasserting and applauding in the national capitol the sentiments of unrepentant rebellion with sending Union soldiers to the rear, and promoting Confederate soldiers to the front with deliberately proposing to repudiate the plighted faith of the government with being equally false and imbecile upon the over-shadowing financial question with thwarting the ends of justice, by its partisan mismanagements and obstruction of investigation with proving itself, through the period of its ascendency in the lower house of congress, utterly incompetent to administer the government and we warn the country against trusting a party thus alike unworthy, recreant, and incapable.

17. The national administration merits commendation for its honorable work in the management of domestic and foreign affairs, and President Grant deserves the continued hearty gratitude of the American people, for his patriotism and his eminent services in war and in peace.

18. We present as our candidates for President and Vice-President of the United States two distinguished statesmen, of eminent ability and character, and conspicuously fitted for those high offices, and we confidently appeal to the American people to intrust the administration of their public affairs to Rutherford B. Hayes and William A. Wheeler.

APP Note: The American Presidency Project used the first day of the national nominating convention as the "date" of this platform since the original document is undated.


1 Okun Edet Uya, From Slavery to Political Service: Robert Smalls, 1839–1915 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1971): 90.

2 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service: vii.

3 Historians debate the identity of Smalls’s father. Smalls’s descendants claim his father was his owner, John McKee see Ingrid Irene Sabio, “Robert Smalls,” in Jessie Carney Smith, ed., Notable Black American Men (Farmington Hills, MI: Gale Research, Inc., 1999): 1071 (hereinafter referred to as NBAM). Sabio also suggests that Smalls may have been the son of Moses Goldsmith, a Charleston merchant. Another biographer notes that his father was unknown but suggests John McKee’s paternity see Glenda E. Gilmore, “Smalls, Robert,” American National Biography 20 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999): 111–112 (hereinafter referred to as ANB). Still others indicate his father was a white manager on the McKee plantation named Patrick Smalls see Shirley Washington, Outstanding African Americans of Congress (Washington, DC: United States Capitol Historical Society, 1998): 8. If he was not Smalls’s son, it is unclear how he received his surname, though his chief biographer speculates “Smalls” may have been a pejorative description of his stature. See Edward A. Miller, Jr., Gullah Statesman: Robert Smalls from Slavery to Congress, 1839–1915 (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1995): 7.

4 Smalls also had two stepdaughters, Clara and Charlotte Jones. See Andrew Billingsley, Yearning to Breathe Free: Robert Smalls of South Carolina and his Families (Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 2007): xxiii.

5 Maurine Christopher, Black Americans in Congress (New York: Thomas Y. Crowell Company, 1976): 42 Gilmore, “Smalls, Robert,” ANB.

6 The U.S. Government never fully compensated Smalls for the value of the Planter as a reward for its capture. During the next 30 years, black Members of Congress sought compensation for Smalls equal to the value of the ship. James O’Hara sought compensation for Smalls in the 49th Congress (1885–1887). Henry Cheatham made similar unsuccessful requests in the 51st and 52nd Congresses (1889–1893), and George White failed to pass a resolution reimbursing Smalls in the 55th Congress (1897–1899). The House finally approved a measure submitted by White on May 18, 1900, during the 56th Congress (1899–1901). White originally requested that Smalls receive $20,000. The Committee on War Claims, however, reduced the amount to $5,000. Smalls received this sum after President William McKinley signed the bill into law on June 5, 1900. See Congressional Record, House, 56th Cong., 1st sess. (18 May 1900): 5715.

7 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service: 16–17.

8 Details on Smalls’s military service are unclear because his paperwork was lost. Several sources indicate that Smalls served in the Navy, but others note that he did not have the education to pilot a naval vessel. Therefore, he either received a commission in or worked as a civilian for the Union Army and was frequently detailed to the Navy for service at sea. Smalls was promoted to captain of the Planter in 1865, though it is unclear whether he attained that rank in the Navy or the Army. His alleged salary of $150 per month made him one of the highest–paid African–American servicemen in the Civil War. Smalls received his Navy pension after petitioning Congress in 1897. See Christopher, Black Americans in Congress: 42 Gilmore, “Smalls, Robert,” ANB Sabio, “Robert Smalls,” NBAM Eric Foner, Freedom’s Lawmakers: A Directory of Black Officeholders During Reconstruction (New York: Oxford University Press, 1993): 198 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service: 20–22 Miller, Gullah Statesman: 12–27 Billingsley, Yearning to Breathe Free: 61, 75, 82 Kitt Haley Alexander, “Robert Smalls’ Timeline,” Robert Smalls Official Website and Information Center see http://www.robertsmalls.org/timeline.htm (accessed 11 October 2007).

9 Foner, Freedom’s Lawmakers: 198. Smalls was a delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1864, 1872, and 1876 and the Republican National Conventions from 1884 to 1896.

10 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service:26–27 Miller, Gullah Statesman:23.

11 Rupert Sargent Holland, ed., Letters and Diary of Laura M. Towne (New York: Negro Universities Press, 1969): 241 Miller, Gullah Statesman:95. While serving in Congress, he introduced a private bill asking for the relief of the McKee family, but the bill did not pass (see H.R. 2487, 44th Congress, 1st session).

12 Christopher, Black Americans in Congress: 42.

13 Foner, Freedom’s Lawmakers: 198.

14 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service:90.

15 Congressional Record, House, 44th Cong., 1st sess. (23 May 1876): 3272–3275 Congressional Record, House, 44th Cong., 1st sess. (25 July 1876): 4876.

16 Miller, Gullah Statesman:97. His bill passed the House, but no action was taken in the Senate.

17 Congressional Record, House, 44th Cong., 1st sess. (18 July 1876): 4705.

18 “The Rifle Clubs ‘Dividing Time,’” 20 October 1876, New York Times: 1 “The South Carolina Cheating,” 15 December 1880, New York Times: 1 “The South Carolina Issue,” 31 October 1890, Washington Post: 4.

19 Michael J. Dubin et al., U.S. Congressional Elections, 1788–1997 (Jefferson, NC: McFarland & Company, Inc., Publishers, 1998): 240.

20 Miller, Gullah Statesman:108.

21 Congressional Record, Appendix, 44th Cong., 2nd sess. (24 February 1877): A123–136.

22 “Robert Smalls’ Trial,” 17 December 1877, New York Times: 2 Grace Greenwood, “Remember Those in Bonds,” 14 January 1878, New York Times: 1 “The Persecution of Mr. Smalls,” 7 December 1878, New York Times: 1.

23 Holland, ed., Letters and Diary of Laura M. Towne: 288.

24 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service:111.

25 Dubin et al., U.S. Congressional Elections, 1788–1997: 247.

26 Miller, Gullah Statesman: 131.

27 Holland, ed., Letters and Diary of Laura M. Towne: 293.

28 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service:111–113.

29 Congressional Record, Appendix, 47th Cong., 1st sess. (19 July 1882): A634–643.

30 Miller, Gullah Statesman:138.

31 Ibid., 139 Stanley B. Parsons et al., United States Congressional Districts, 1883–1913 (New York: Greenwood Press, 1990): 136–143.

32 Miller, Gullah Statesman:147.

33 Uya, From Slavery to Political Service:118–119 Miller, Gullah Statesman:147–148.

34 Congressional Record, House, 48th Cong., 2nd sess. (23 February 1883): 2057–2059 see H.R. 7556, 48th Congress, 2nd session.

35 See Christopher, Black Americans in Congress: 50: Miller, Gullah Statesman:153.

36 Congressional Record, Appendix, 49th Cong., 1st sess. (30 July 1886): A319.

37 Congressional Record, House, 49th Cong., 1st sess. (6 January 1886): 481.

38 Congressional Record, House, 49th Cong., 1st sess. (26 June 1886): 6183.

39 “Congressman Smalls’s Canvass,” 20 September 1886, New York Times: 1.

40 “Why Smalls Was Defeated,” 12 December 1886, Washington Post: 3.

41 Christopher, Black Americans in Congress: 50 Dubin et al., U.S. Congressional Elections, 1788–1997: 276.

42 Christopher, Black Americans in Congress: 50–51.

43 “Negro Delegates in Control,” 18 September 1890, Washington Post: 1.

44 “Wade Hampton Losing Votes,” 11 December 1890, New York Times: 1.

Ohio Constitutional Convention of 1873 - 1874

In 1871, some Ohio government officials felt the need to redraft Ohio's state constitution. The constitution currently in effect was the Constitution of 1851. During the twenty years since this document's ratification, the United States had experienced great change.

One of the greatest changes that had occurred within Ohio during these twenty years was a rapidly growing population. Between 1850 and 1870, Ohio's population had increased by more than 700,000 people to 2.7 million residents. Because of this larger population, legal cases had overwhelmed Ohio's courts. Many cases waited for years before the courts could hear them.

Ohio had moved as well from being an agricultural to a more industrialized society. Along with this change, much of Ohio's population was now in cities rather than rural areas. Some Ohioans felt that the changing society had created a sense of declining moral values. Many legislators and state residents hoped that a new constitution could address Ohio's new needs.

In October 1871, Ohio voters called for the state government to organize a constitutional convention. The legislature did not act until January 1873, when it called for an election to select representatives for the convention. The convention met for the first time in May 1873 in Columbus. It included fifty members of the Republican Party, forty-six members of the Democratic Party, and nine Independents. Despite having received a mandate from Ohio residents to replace the Constitution of 1851, the convention acted slowly. It took a full year before the convention had a new constitution to submit to Ohio voters. From May to August 1873, the convention met in Columbus. The convention then reconvened in Cincinnati in December 1873, where it remained until May 1874.

The conventioneers approved a constitution that was dramatically different from the Constitution of 1851. Under the proposed constitution, legislators would serve two-year terms and would be paid a flat annual salary rather than a salary based on the number of days the legislature was in session. The governor would receive the right to veto legislation, but the legislature could override the governor's action with a three-fifths vote in each house of the Ohio legislature. To assist the courts, the new constitution called for the creation of a new level of state courts. These courts were to be known as Circuit Courts, and they would hear cases appealed from the Court of Common Pleas. Ohioans could then appeal Circuit Court decisions to the Ohio Supreme Court. The document also addressed education and women's rights issues. Religious groups were prohibited from receiving state education funds. Women were permitted to hold all school offices in Ohio except Ohio Commissioner of Schools.

In August 1874, the convention sent the new constitution to Ohio's voters for ratification. Voters clearly rejected the constitution by a vote of 102,885 in favor of ratification and 250,169 opposed to the document's adoption. It is unclear why Ohioans so soundly rejected the constitution. Many contemporaries and later scholars claimed that it was due to another measure that appeared on the same ballot as the constitution. This measure permitted the Ohio government some oversight in the trafficking and sale of alcoholic beverages. Many temperance advocates opposed this measure because it would still allow the sale of alcohol. Having the constitution and the regulation of alcohol on the same ballot may have convinced these temperance advocates that the two issues were connected. As a result of this confusion, some temperance supporters voted down both issues.

Other people believed that Catholics especially opposed the constitution because it prohibited access to state funds for their private schools. Many Catholics believed that the taxes that they paid to support public education in the state should also be used to support private schools. Another explanation suggested that Democrats could not support a document in which Republicans had the greatest say due to the Republican Party's larger representation at the constitutional convention. Whatever the reasons for the constitution's defeat, Ohioans clearly rejected the document. The state did not hold another constitutional convention until 1912.

Address to the Colored Voters of the State of Pennsylvania, issued by the Pennsylvania State Equal Rights League, Harrisburg, August 1872

To the Colored Voters of the State of Pennsylvania, issued by the State Convention recently held in Harrisburgh, under the auspices of the Equal Rights League.

We come to you as brothers of the same race, having a common cause to defend and a common destiny to accomplish. We come to you as heralds of Liberty, to warn you that a danger, more deadly than the [unreadable] the blood and causes the life-pulse to cease its vibrations. The foes of a righteous government and of liberty are trying with super-human strength to roll

the blood and causes the life-pulse to cease its vibrations. The foes of a righteous government and of liberty are trying with super-human strength to roll away the stone from the sepulchre of slavery. The omnipotent arm of the Almighty, through his chosen instruments, the Republican party, loosed the chains that bound us and gave us freedom and the rights of freemen. The incessant efforts of ambitious men, actuated by the rule or ruin policy, have culminated in the organization of a party, which, although unmarked by the prestige of noble deeds is, nevertheless, so specious in its declarations, so apparently fair in its platform of principles, that many good men have been deceived by its glittering, but false presentments, and have marshalled themselves under its banner.

"They have clasped hands with the rebels across the bloody chasm," whose purpose is to overthrow the glorious results of the recent terrible war of the rebellion and inaugurate through the old wicked heresy of States Rights, a code of laws more infamous than those of Draco--more intolerable than those which governed the serfs of the feudal ages. The philosophic axiom, based upon historic facts, that revolutions never go backward, is an acknowledged truth. But it is also true that the wheel of revolution sometimes oscillates: going neither backward nor forward, but vibrating, like the pendulum in the same groove: as witness the transition of Europe from the golden ages to the dark ages, and thence again to the ages of civilization and enlightenment. For four

hundred years, her people, once skilled in the arts and sciences, were hurled to the terrible abyss of barbarism and idolatry. History repeats itself and only those who study its philosophy, can interpret its phenomena and point out a way of escape from its dreadful retributions.

The colored race of this country, have but recently emerged from the condition of slavery. We know what was its influence we know the ruin it has made we know the wide-spread desolation it has caused. We also know who were instruments in the hands of Almighty God, in driving the accursed institution from the land and declaring freedom to the race, which for two and a half centuries had groaned in chains. The instruments of our disenthralment were the noble patriots who still cling to the standard of the Union Republican party.

They under God, were our deliverers: they fought and bled for us many of them died for us. Fellow-citizens, can we, will we become so lost to every [. ] of right and justice so recreant to the holiest sentiment of humanity as to [. ] our true friends and vote for the candidates of the Liberal Republican Democratic party! Forbid it, Almighty God.

Remember, the causes, which resulted in the down-fall of the nations of Continental Europe and their introduction into the dark ages, were inconstancy to the sacred duties of life, and ingratitude to their benefactors--ingratitude, the sin which calls to heaven for vengeance. "History, is philosophy, teaching by example." Let us avoid the shoals and breakers which wrecked the proud barks

of the nations of antiquity, and as we are just launched upon the sea of life, let us take God and justice for our rudder and compass and thus sailing forth, we shall fear no evil, for "He will be our . upon our right hand." Let us submit our ballots, which are the nations? insignia of manhood, for Grant ? and the whole State ? and avoid the evils which will surely come upon us, if we give our assistance toward the election of the Liberal Democratic Republican ticket.

The two platforms need but a cursory glance to enable us to determine the pure gold from the counterfeit glitter of gold. The Union Republican platform pledges itself emphatically to the support of civil rights. The Liberal Democratic Republican platform, speaks of it as a right,

efforts of ambitious men, actuated by the rule or ruin policy, have culminated in the organization of a party, which, although unmarked by the prestige of noble deeds is, nevertheless, so specious in its declarations, so apparently fair in its platform of principles, that many good men have been deceived by its glittering, but false presentments, and have marshaled themselves under its banner. "They have clasped hands with the rebels across the bloody chasm," whose purpose is to overthrow the glorious results of the recent terrible war of the rebellion and inaugurate through the old wicked heresy of States' Rights, a code of laws more infamous than those of Draco--more intolerable than those which governed the serfs of the feudal ages. The philosophic axiom, based

oppressed. For women, it declares as follows:--

14th. The Republican party is mindful of its obligations to the loyal women of America for the noble devotion to the cause of freedom. Their admission to wider fields of usefulness is received with satisfaction, and the honest demands of any class of citizens for additional rights should be treated with respectful consideration.

Fellow-citizens, with us, in the fierce struggle for party supremacy which marks the present political campaign, principles are far dearer than men. Horace Greeley, the Presidential nominee by the Liberal Democratic Republicans is what the world calls a good man. We do not deny it, yet he is pledged to carry out a certain policy and set of

ples, which are inimical to not only our selves, but the whole country. On the other hand, Ulysses S. Grant is the Presidential candidate of a party which is known as the party of human rights and human progress. It has proved its right to these titles, by deeds whose greatness has resounded through the world. It is a party of great principles. Its great standard-bearer, President Grant, stands as high, socially, morally and religious-

ly, as Mr. Greeley, and if he did not, it would still be our duty to vote for our great commander. Principles, not men, simply, must be our watchword, at least in the present campaign.

In our Gubernatorial contest, we have on the Union Republican ticket, the brave Gen. John F. Hartranft, the hero of many battles in the cause of Freedom, fought against our Southern foes. He has a large place in the hearts of our colored soldiers and of our grateful people. We know him. Malignity, born of hate and envy has tried to darken his fame as an honest man, but those charges have recoiled upon the heads of those who gave them to the public ear. The Hon. D. N. White's letter is a masterly vindication of Gen. Hartranft, and we thank him for it.

The Liberal Democratic Republicans have nominated for Governor, Ex-Senator Buckalew. We denounce him because of his persistent opposition to the colored men of the nation. While our brave boys were dying in the field pierced by rebel bullets, he in his place in the Senate, retarded the patriotic measures of that body voting against supplies and the necessary means to carry on that war.

Gen Hartranft is a good man, respected and loved by his neighbors and friends, and even if he were not—his great record as a man and his proved devotion to radical Republican principles, entitle him to our earnest support and our every vote.

Fellow-citizens—It must be a subject of unmixed pleasure to you as it is to the

members of this Convention, that in the first Presidential vote which we shall cast in November next since our investiture into the sacred rites as citixens, we will, here in the State of Pa., cast our vote for a colored man, as one of the Presidential Electors. Wm. D. Forten, Esq., eminently deserves your suffrages. He is a man of the people. His long and useful life has been devoted to our elevation. We thank the State Central Committee for placing him upon the Electoral ticket and giving us an additional incentive for organizing and bringing out the full colored vote of the State. And now, brothers, arm for the conflict, organize your clubs, under the auspices of the State League. Freedom calls you! Be ready to dash again to the earth the oppressor's rod. May God

the earth the oppressor's rod. May God gives us victory, and the Union Republican party a glorious triumph!

1872 Republican Platform

The Republican party of the United States, assembled in National Convention in the city of Philadelphia, on the 5th and 6th days of June, 1872, again declares its faith, appeals to its history, and announces its position upon the questions before the country.

First. During eleven years of supremacy it has accepted with grand courage the solemn duties of the time. It suppressed a gigantic rebellion, emancipated four millions of slaves, decreed the equal citizenship of all, and established universal suffrage. Exhibiting unparalleled magnanimity, it criminally punished no man for political offenses, and warmly welcomed all who proved loyalty by obeying the laws and dealing justly with their neighbors. It has steadily decreased with firm hand the resultant disorders of a great war, and initiated a wise and humane policy toward the Indians. The Pacific railroad and similar vast enterprises have been generously aided and successfully conducted, the public lands freely given to actual settlers, immigration protected and encouraged, and a full acknowledgment of the naturalized citizens' rights secured from European Powers. A uniform national currency has been provided, repudiation frowned down, the national credit sustained under the most extraordinary burdens, and new bonds negotiated at lower rates. The revenues have been carefully collected and honestly applied. Despite large annual reductions of the rates of taxation, the public debt has been reduced during General Grant's Presidency at the rate of a hundred millions a year, great financial crises have been avoided, and peace and plenty prevail throughout the land. Menacing foreign difficulties have been peacefully and honorably composed, and the honor and power of the nation kept in high respect throughout the world. This glorious record of the past is the party's best pledge for the future. We believe the people will not intrust the Government to any party or combination of men composed chiefly of those who have resisted every step of this beneficent progress.

Second. The recent amendments to the national Constitution should be cordially sustained because they are right, not merely tolerated because they are law, and should be carried out according to their spirit by appropriate legislation, the enforcement of which can safely be entrusted only to the party that secured those amendments.

Third. Complete liberty and exact equality in the enjoyment of all civil, political, and public rights should be established and effectually maintained throughout the Union, by efficient and appropriate State and Federal legislation. Neither the law nor its administration should admit any discrimination in respect of citizens by reason of race, creed, color, or previous condition of servitude.

Fourth. The National Government should seek to maintain honorable peace with all nations, protecting its citizens everywhere, and sympathizing with all people who strive for greater liberty.

Fifth. Any system of the civil service under which the subordinate positions of the government are considered rewards for mere party zeal is fatally demoralizing, and we therefore favor a reform of the system by laws which shall abolish the evils of patronage, and make honesty, efficiency, and fidelity the essential qualifications for public positions, without practically creating a life-tenure of office.

Sixth. We are opposed to further grants of the public lands to corporations and monopolies, and demand that the national domain be set apart for free homes for the people.

Seventh. The annual revenue, after paying current expenditures, pensions, and the interest on the public debt, should furnish a moderate balance for the reduction of the principal and that revenue, except so much as may be derived from a tax upon tobacco and liquors, should be raised by duties upon importations, the details of which should be so adjusted as to aid in securing remunerative wages to labor, and to promote the industries, prosperity, and growth of the whole country.

Eighth. We hold in undying honor the soldiers and sailors whose valor saved the Union. Their pensions are a sacred debt of the nation, and the widows and orphans of those who died for their country are entitled to the care of a generous and grateful people. We favor such additional legislation as will extend the bounty of the Government to all our soldiers and sailors who were honorably discharged, and who, in the line of duty, became disabled, without regard to the length of service or the cause of such discharge.

Ninth. The doctrine of Great Britain and other European powers concerning allegiance—"Once a subject always a subject"—having at last, through the efforts of the Republican party, been abandoned, and the American idea of the individual's right to transfer allegiance having been accepted by European nations, it is the duty of our Government to guard with jealous care the rights of adopted citizens against the assumption of unauthorized claims by their former governments and we urge continued careful encouragement and protection of voluntary immigration.

Tenth. The franking privilege ought to be abolished, and the way prepared for a speedy reduction in the rates of postage.

Eleventh. Among the questions which press for attention is that which concerns the relations of capital and labor, and the Republican party recognizes the duty of so shaping legislation as to secure full protection and the amplest field for capital, and for labor—the creator of capital—the largest opportunities and a just share of the mutual profits of these two great servants of civilization.

Twelfth. We hold that Congress and the President have only fulfilled an imperative duty in their measures for the suppression of violent and treasonable organizations in certain lately rebellious regions, and for the protection of the ballot-box, and therefore they are entitled to the thanks of the nation.

Thirteenth. We denounce repudiation of the public debt, in any form or disguise, as a national crime. We witness with pride the reduction of the principal of the debt, and of the rates of interest upon the balance, and confidently expect that our excellent national currency will be perfected by a speedy resumption of specie payment.

Fourteenth. The Republican party is mindful of its obligations to the loyal women of America for their noble devotion to the cause of freedom. Their admission to wider fields of usefulness is viewed with satisfaction, and the honest demand of any class of citizens for additional rights should be treated with respectful consideration.

Fifteenth. We heartily approve the action of Congress in extending amnesty to those lately in rebellion, and rejoice in the growth of peace and fraternal feeling throughout the land.

Sixteenth. The Republican party proposes to respect the rights reserved by the people to themselves as carefully as the powers delegated by them to the State and to the Federal Government. It disapproves of the resort to unconstitutional laws for the purpose of removing evils, by interference with rights not surrendered by the people to either the State or National Government.

Seventeenth. It is the duty of the general Government to adopt such measures as may tend to encourage and restore American commerce and ship-building.

Eighteenth. We believe that the modest patriotism, the earnest purpose, the sound judgment, the practical wisdom, the incorruptible integrity, and the illustrious services of Ulysses S. Grant have commended him to the heart of the American people, and with him at our head we start to-day upon a new march to victory.

Nineteenth. Henry Wilson, nominated for the Vice-Presidency, known to the whole land from the early days of the great struggle for liberty as an indefatigable laborer in all campaigns, an incorruptible legislator and representative man of American institutions, is worthy to associate with our great leader and share the honors which we pledge our best efforts to bestow upon them.


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The Beginning of the Republican Party

“To do for the community of people whatever they need to have done, but cannot do at all, or cannot so well do, for themselves in their separate and individual capacities. In all that the people can individually do as well for themselves, government ought not to interfere.” – Abraham Lincoln

It is this simple philosophy on which the Republican Party was founded.

The year was 1854. The Democrats and Whigs were the leading political parties, and the Free Soilers had recently gained enough strength to place candidates for election. The issue was slavery. The emotions of the nation and its citizens rose as Congress debated the Kansas-Nebraska bill. Its passage would leave the legal questions of slavery to the residents of these new states and upset a quarter century ban on slavery in the remaining Louisiana Purchase territory.

On February 28, Maj. Alvan E. Bovay called a meeting in the Congregational Church in Ripon, Wisconsin. The men who met that night in that small farming community were the Democrats, Whig and Free Soilers. They were brought together by a common belief..SLAVERY was unconstitutional.Out of the meeting came a resolution. A new party, to be named the Republican Party, would be formed if the Kansas-Nebraska bill passed. It was only a short time before the Senate approved the bill. It was law – the extension of slavery was a real threat. Major Bovay called a second meeting.

On March 20, 53 local citizens gathered in the schoolhouse in Ripon. From their numbers they appointed a committee of five to form the new party. The local Free Soil and Whig organizations were dissolved. The Ripon meeting was only the first of many that year. In Michigan, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, New York and other Northern states, citizens of similar persuasion met to form Republican organizations.

The first Republican convention was held in Jackson, Michigan on July 6, 1854. The crowd was so great it could not be held in the town’s largest hall. The business of the party had to be conducted in a grove of oaks near the county race track. These resolutions signaled the formal beginning of the new national party.

They resolved, that in view of the imminent danger that Kansas and Nebraska will be grasped by slavery and a thousand miles of slave soil will be thus interposed between the free states of the Atlantic and those of the Pacific, we will act cordially and faithfully in unison to avert and repeal this gigantic wrong and shame.

Resolved, that in the view of the necessity of battling for the first principles of Republican government and against schemes of an aristocracy, the most revolting and oppressive with which the earth was ever cursed or man debased, we will cooperate and be known as Republicans until the contest be terminated.

Under the Republican or anti-Nebraska, the party made significant inroads that fall in its first tests at the polls winning 11 United States senate seats. With the help of anti-Nebraskans the new party was able to control and organize the house.

Republican tickets were in office in Michigan and Wisconsin. By 1856 the Republican Party was organized nationally and state delegates appointed a national executive committee which was authorized to call a national nominating convention that June in Philadelphia.

The symbol of the party was born in the imagination of cartoonist Thomas Nast and first presented in Harper’s Weekly on Nov. 7, 1874. An 1860 issue of the Rails litter and an 1872 cartoon in Harper’s weekly connected elephants with republicans, but it was Nast who provided both parties with their Symbols.

Oddly, two connected events led to the birth of the republican elephant. James Gordon Bennett’s New York Herald raised the cry of “caesarism” in connections with the possibility of a third term try for President Ulysses S. Grant. The issue was taken up by Democratic politicians in 1874, halfway through Grant’s second term and just before the midterm elections, and helped disaffect republican voters.

While the illustrated journals were depicting Grant wearing a crown, the Herald involved itself in another circulation-builder in an entirely different nonpolitical area. This was the Central Park Menagerie scare of 1874, a delightful hoax perpetrated by the Herald. They ran a story, totally untrue, that the animals in the zoo had broken loose and were roaming the wilds of New York’s Central Park in search of prey.

Cartoonist Thomas Nast took the two examples of Herald enterprise and put them together in a cartoon in Harper’s Weekly. He showed a donkey symbolizing the herald) wearing a lion’s skin 9 the scary prospect of ceasarism0 frightening away the other animals in the forest (central Park).

The caption quotes familiar fable. A donkey having put on a lion’s skin roamed about in the forest and amused himself by frightening all the foolish animals he met within his wanderings.

One of the foolish animals in the cartoon was an elephant , representing the republican vote. Not the party, the vote – which was being frightened away from its normal ties by the phone scare of cearism. In a subsequent cartoon on Nov.21, 18724, after the election in which republicans did badly, Nast followed up the idea by showing the elephant in a trap, illustrating the way the republican vote had been decoyed from its normal allegiance, other cartoonists picked up the symbol, and the elephant soon ceased to be the vote and became the itself, the donkey made a natural transition from representing the Heralds to representing the democratic Party hat had frightened the elephant.

The republican convention of 1872 (stupid cats election series)

Background While the economy has mostly recovered sense the panic of 1869 has died down and the price of gold has return to normal. however the western states have been in stagnation as after the panic some people left thinking it wouldn’t return to normal and many blame president grant. They may be onto something with there criticism as the grant administration has yet to do much for the people out west focusing mostly on the east some people are so upset at the lack of help they found there own protest party the gold party which it got that name from its origin in the panic of 1869 the gold party nominated John c Fremont.

The Atlanta incident as its come to be know has been a controversial debate on what to do and while the official punishment has been executed with the mob leaders being arrested many call for more action but some say that the punishment given was enough.

Others criticized grant for large amounts of corruption in his cabinet while grant had made promises to crack down on corruption he still shows favoritism with friends and family.

However despite the corruption and the Atlanta incident grant remains fairly popular

Grant has expanded citizenship to African Americans and grant granted civil rights to where blacks can now hold public office. Grant has also started a crackdown of terrorist in the south groups like the Mob that stormed George and the kkk.

Grant has also keep the county neutral in foreign affairs which is popular among most people.

Ulysses grant seeks re-election and promises to try and crack down on the corruption in his cabinet and to stick to his decision on the George incident. However grant hasn’t been very vocal on the issue of stagnation in the west. Grant also wished to keep going back to the gold standard. Grant also wishes to keep peace when possible with the native Americans Grant has also picked a new Vice President Henry Wilson a radical republican and someone who has spoke up for blacks and worker rights

Sumner is the leader of the radical republicans and is very pro civil rights and has been outspoken on how he thinks that the south should be punished or at least the state of George should be punished for the incident. Sumner is also a big critic of grant corrupt cabinet and promises that if elected would stamp corruption out. Sumner is similar to grant both on foreign policy and on economics. However critics say that sumner is to radical and would provoke to south into more violence as some southerns have said that the George incident would look small compared to what would happen if sumner is elected. However some also concern at that sumner is in poor health and won’t make it a full term.