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Encyclopedia > United States presidential election, 1856
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Presidential electoral votes by state.
1856 Republican parade banner
1856 Republican parade banner

The U.S. presidential election of 1856 was unusually heated. The Republicans crusaded against the Slave Power, while the Democrats warned the Republicans were extremists whose victory would lead to civil war. The newly formed Republican Party condemned the Kansas-Nebraska Act and expansion of slavery, while Democrats took more of a laissez-faire approach to slavery expansion, taking the official position that it was a state-by-state decision. A third party, the new-minted American Party or "Know-Nothings", ignored the slavery issue (in favor of anti-immigration policies) and won a quarter of the vote. Download high resolution version (1182x635, 99 KB)Image from http://nationalatlas. ... Download high resolution version (1182x635, 99 KB)Image from http://nationalatlas. ... Image File history File links FREMONT2. ... Image File history File links FREMONT2. ... The Slave Power was the term used in the Northern United States in the period 1840-1865 to describe the political power of the slaveholding class in the South. ... The Republican Party was born in 1854 and is one of the two dominant parties today. ... The Kansas–Nebraska Act was a United States federal law passed on May 30, 1854, organizing a territorial government for the lands that later became the states of Kansas and Nebraska. ... The History of the Democratic Party is an account of a continuously supported political party in the United States of America. ... The Know-Nothing movement was a nativist American political movement of the 1850s. ...

Caricature of Democractic Platform
Caricature of Democractic Platform

The incumbent President Franklin Pierce was defeated in his effort to be renominated by the Democrats, who instead selected James Buchanan of Pennsylvania. The Whig Party had disintegrated over the issue of slavery, and new organizations such as the Republican Party and the American Party competed to replace them. The Republicans nominated John Frémont of California as their first standard bearer, and the Know-Nothings nominated former President Millard Fillmore of New York. Perennial candidate Daniel Pratt also ran. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1264x815, 596 KB) Summary Caricature of the Democratic Party from United States presidential election, 1856 Licensing This image is in the public domain in the United States. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (1264x815, 596 KB) Summary Caricature of the Democratic Party from United States presidential election, 1856 Licensing This image is in the public domain in the United States. ... Franklin Pierce (November 23, 1804 – October 8, 1869) was an American politician and the 14th President of the United States, serving from 1853 to 1857. ... James Buchanan (April 23, 1791 – June 1, 1868) was the 15th president of the United States (1857–1861). ... The United States Whig Party was a political party of the United States. ... John C. Frémont John Charles Frémont (January 21, 1813–July 13, 1890), born John Charles Fremon, was an American military officer, explorer, the first candidate of the United States Republican Party for the office of President of the United States, and the first Presidential candidate of a major... Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq. ... Millard Fillmore (January 7, 1800 – March 8, 1874) was the thirteenth President of the United States, serving from 1850 until 1853, and the last member of the Whig Party to hold the nations highest office. ... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Albany Largest city New York City Area  Ranked 27th  - Total 141,205 km²  (54,520 sq. ... This biographical article needs to be wikified. ...


Frémont received fewer than 600 votes from slave states—those all coming from Delaware and Maryland. The electoral college results indicated, however, that the Republicans could likely win the next election in 1860 by winning just two more states—such as Pennsylvania and Illinois. A slave state is a U.S. State that had legal slavery (overwhelmingly the enslavement of African-Americans, although historically also the enslavement of Native Americans, and Whites through indentured servitude) in the period leading up to the American Civil War and the Emancipation Proclamation. ...

Contents


General election

Campaign

Neither candidate took to the stump. Republicans opposed the extension of slavery into the territories—in fact, their slogan was "Free speech, free press, free soil, free men, Frémont and victory!" The Republicans thus crusaded against the Slave power warning it was destroying republican values. Democrats counter-crusaded warning that a Republican victory would bring Civil War. The Slave Power was the term used in the Northern United States in the period 1840-1865 to describe the political power of the slaveholding class in the South. ...


Results

Presidential Candidate Party Home State Popular Vote(a) Electoral Vote Running Mate Running Mate's
Home State
Running Mate's
Electoral Vote
Count Percentage
James Buchanan Democratic Pennsylvania 1,836,072 45.3% 174 John Cabell Breckinridge Kentucky 174
John Charles Frémont Republican California 1,342,345 33.1% 114 William Lewis Dayton New Jersey 114
Millard Fillmore American New York 873,053 21.6% 8 Andrew Jackson Donelson Tennessee 8
Other 3,177 0.1% 0 Other 0
Total 4,058,647 100.0% 296 Total 296
Needed to win 149 Needed to win 149

Source (Popular Vote): Leip, David. 1856 Presidential Election Results. Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections (July 27, 2005). James Buchanan (April 23, 1791 – June 1, 1868) was the 15th president of the United States (1857–1861). ... The Democratic Party is one of the two major political parties in the United States. ... Official language(s) None Capital Harrisburg Largest city Philadelphia Area  Ranked 33rd  - Total 46,055 sq. ... John C. Breckinridge This article is about the politician and Confederate General. ... Official language(s) English Capital Frankfort Largest city Louisville Area  Ranked 37th  - Total 40,444 sq. ... John C. Frémont John Charles Frémont (January 21, 1813-July 13, 1890), birth name John Charles Fremon [Harvey, p. ... The Republican Party, often called the GOP (for Grand Old Party, although one early citation described it as the Gallant Old Party) [1], is one of the two major political parties in the United States. ... Official language(s) English Capital Sacramento Largest city Los Angeles Area  Ranked 3rd  - Total 158,302 sq. ... William Lewis Dayton (February 17, 1807 – December 1, 1864) was an American lawyer from Freehold Borough, New Jersey. ... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Largest city Trenton Newark Area  Ranked 47th  - Total 8,729 sq. ... Millard Fillmore (January 7, 1800 – March 8, 1874) was the thirteenth President of the United States, serving from 1850 until 1853, and the last member of the Whig Party to hold the nations highest office. ... Official language(s) None, English de facto Capital Albany Largest city New York City Area  Ranked 27th  - Total 141,205 km²  (54,520 sq. ... Andrew Jackson Donelson (1799–1871) was a diplomat and candidate for the Vice Presidency. ... Official language(s) English Capital Nashville Largest city Memphis Area  - Total  - Width  - Length  - % water  - Latitude  - Longitude Ranked 36th 109,247 km² 195 km 710 km 2. ... July 27 is the 208th day (209th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, with 157 days remaining. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


Source (Electoral Vote): Electoral College Box Scores 1789–1996. Official website of the National Archives. (July 31, 2005). July 31 is the 212th day (213th in leap years) of the year in the Gregorian Calendar, with 153 days remaining. ... 2005 (MMV) was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar. ...


(a) The popular vote figures exclude South Carolina where the Electors were chosen by the state legislature rather than by popular vote. Official language(s) English Capital Largest city Columbia Columbia Area  Ranked 40th  - Total 34,726 sq. ...


See also

In the 19th century the United States invented or developed a number of new methods for conducting American Election Campaigns. ... This article covers the History of the United States from 1849 through 1865. ... The History of the Democratic Party is an account of a continuously supported political party in the United States of America. ... The Republican Party was born in 1854 and is one of the two dominant parties today. ... The origins of the American Civil War lay in the complex issues of politics, competing understandings of federalism, slavery, expansionism, sectionalism, economics, modernization, states rights and competing nationalism of the Antebellum period. ... The Third Party System, which began in 1854 and changed over to the Fourth Party System in the mid-1890s revolved around the issues of nationalism, modernization, and race. ...

Notes

    References

    • Tyler Anbinder, Nativism and Slavery: The Northern Know Nothings and the Politics of the 1850s (1992)
    • Eric Foner, Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Men: The Ideology of the Republican Party before the Civil War (1970)
    • William E. Gienapp, The Origins of the Republican Party, 1852-1856 (1987).
    • Michael F. Holt, The Political Crisis of the 1850s (1978), pp 139-81
    • Nevins, Allan. Ordeal of the Union: vol 2: A House Dividing, 1852-1857 (1947), the most detailed narrative
    • Michael D. Pierson; "'Prairies on Fire': The Organization of the 1856 Mass Republican Rally in Beloit, Wisconsin" Civil War History, Vol. 48, 2002
    • Potter, David (1976). Impending Crisis 1848–1861. ISBN 0060905247.
    • James A. Rawley, Race and Politics: "Bleeding Kansas" and the Coming of the Civil War (1969)
    • Richard H. Sewell, Ballots for Freedom: Antislavery Politics in the United States, 1837-1860 (1976) 254-91

    External links

    • 1856 popular vote by counties
    • 1856 state-by-state popular voting results

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