Download American ballot box mid 19th century by Richard Franklin Bensel PDF

By Richard Franklin Bensel

Not like sleek elections, the yankee polling position of the mid-nineteenth century used to be completely endowed with symbolic which means for many who differently shouldn't have had the least curiosity in politics. This made the polls intriguing and inspired males to vote at a long way greater premiums than they do this present day. males who approached a polling position have been met via brokers of the foremost political events. They handled the citizens with whiskey, gave them petty bribes, and prompt that they need to be dependable to their ethnic and spiritual groups. As stated within the eyewitness money owed of standard electorate, the polls have been usually crowded, noisy, and sometimes, violent.

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John Covode vs. Henry D. Foster, election held on October 13, 1868. Introduction 13 13 anarchic. Almost anything was permitted in this public space in terms of speech, electioneering, and, all too often, physical intimidation. Under the law and almost inevitably in practice, election officials had no authority to maintain order outside the voting window. 14 Inside the polling place, the ballot boxes were usually situated on tables at least several feet away from the voting window. The officials, called “judges of election,” would receive tickets from voters who presented themselves at the voting window and deposit them in the boxes.

42 In all these instances, election judges were forced to rely on evidence immediately available at the polls. That evidence could usually be classified under three different headings. The first was the claim made by the prospective voter himself, often backed by a sworn oath that the information he provided was true. The second was close inspection of the prospective voter’s physical appearance, attire, speech, and demeanor. The third was the joint recollection of the election judges, challengers, and bystanders as to the social characteristics, such as racial identity and age, of the prospective voter.

11, pp. 9–10, 21, 27–9, 32, 35–6, 39, 41, 43, 59, 61, 63. Henry D. Washburn vs. Daniel W. Voorhees, election held in October 1864. These were all Republican voters at the Hamilton Township precinct in Sullivan County or at the Cloverdale polls in Putnam County. There were 242 depositions given by Republican voters at these two polling places; thirty-five of those men signed with their “mark,” indicating they could not write their name. As evidence of the level of illiteracy in this township, this should be considered a lower bound; the actual level was probably much higher (pp.

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