The firm of Greeley, Weed, and Seward

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The firm of Greeley, Weed, and Seward New York partisanship and the press, 1840-1860
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Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2003.
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Includes bibliographical references.
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by Gregory Alan Borchard.
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THE FIRM OF GREELEY, WEED, AND SEWARD:
NEW YORK PARTISANSHIP AND THE PRESS, 1840-1860












By

GREGORY ALAN BORCHARD


A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA




























Copyright 2003

by

Gregory Alan Borchard















ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

As a chapter in my graduate studies comes to a close, I thank the folks who have

given me a remarkable level of freedom as a doctoral candidate. Dr. William McKeen

deserves special acknowledgments for managing my work fairly and with respect.

Thanks go to my teaching mentor, Dr. Julie Dodd, a consistent source of inspiration and

support. Thanks go to Dr. Leonard Tipton, a good-natured intellectual and model faculty

member. Thanks go to Dr. Les Smith, a dedicated scholar and committee member.

Thanks go to Dr. Bertram Wyatt-Brown, a first-rate historian and editor. I appreciate Dr.

Marilyn Roberts, too, for accepting me into her seminar on political campaigns spring

2001. Dean Roberts did an exceptional job overseeing my coursework at the University

of Florida and inspired the focus of this dissertation.

I would also like to acknowledge the assistance of the interlibrary loan staff at the

University of Florida, who assisted in ordering and delivering microfilm and primary

sources. I appreciate especially their help in ordering the Horace Greeley Papers from

Duke University and the Thurlow Weed Papers from the University of Rochester.

Biggest thanks go to my family, a source of unconditional support: My parents,

Clark and Bonita, and siblings Tracie, Erin, and Steve are kind and generous. I will

remember most fondly my time in Florida with Grandmother Ruth Borchard. Our chats in

Borchard's Orchard, Grandpa's orange grove, were with me when I wrote.














TABLE OF CONTENTS
pae

ACKN OW LEDGM ENTS ..........................................................................................III

CHAPTERS

1 IN T R O D U C T IO N ................................................................................ ..................... 1

Statement of Purpose .. ............................ .... ................4...
L literature R eview .......................... ............ .... ....... ... .......... ..... 5
Significance of H historical R research ......................................................................... 14
M eth o d o lo g y ............................................ .... ......... ........................ ...... ......... 15
Structure of D issertation ... ............................................................. ....... .......... 2 1
Im p lic atio n s. .. ................. ... ............... ............ .......... ........ .... ....... ......... .... 2 3
N otes ............................... ............ ....... ............... 24

2 MARKETING THE HARRISON PRESIDENCY: THE LOG CABIN, HARD TIMES,
A N D H A R D C ID E R, T O O ......................... ............................................................. 35

Greeley: A Marked Man.................................. .................. 36
The Mastermind and the Higher Law of the Whigs ........................ ................ 38
T he Second Party System .............................................. ................. ............... ..40
M marketing the H arrison Presidency ............................................................................43
T he L o g C ab in ........... ... .... .. .. ... .. ..... .. ..... ............. .... ..................... 4 6
T ippecanoe and T yler, T oo .......................................................... ................. ...... 49
W illiam H enry H arrison Is N o M ore ................ ....... ...................... ................ 51
N o te s .............. ......................... ....................................................................... .. ... 5 3

3 NEW YORK'S PENNY PRESS AND THE 1844 CAMPAIGN: FREE-SOIL MAKES
M U D O F C L A Y ................ ....... ....... ....... ...... ........ ........... ................ .... .... ...... ... 62

Selling P apers L ike H otcakes ........................................ ................................. ..... 63
W hat H ath G od W brought? .............. ........................................... .... .......... ............ 66
B o ss W e e d ......................... .... ............... ....... .......... ...... ......... ...................... 7 0
D em ocrats in W hig C clothing ................ ................................................... ........ 7 1
The 1844 Canvass: Two Things to Fear........................ .......................... ...... 74
Projections and Results: From Clay to M ud .................. .................... .... ......... 78
The True Principles of G overnm ent .......................... .................... .......................83
N otes .................. ............................ .......................... 85










4 THE YEAR OF HOPE: THE FIRM IN 1848 ................................ ................ 93

W a r G a m e s ................... ..... ..... ................................... .......................... ................ 9 4
In the Footsteps of John Q uincy A dam s ................................................ ............... 96
Going West: The Firm and the Homestead .................................... 97
T he 1848 C anvass ........... .. .... ........................ ... ..... .. .. ............... 99
M r. G reeley G oes to W ashington ................................................... ................ ..... 101
Election Results: Meet the New Boss ........... ................. 103
T he Y ear of H ope ........................... .. .. ....................................................... 104
Taylor Is Dead, Long Live the W higs ................. ....... ............... ..... 105
T he L little V illain ...................................... ... .. ..... .. .. ...... .......... ... ... 10 6
C o m p ro m ise F ailed ...................................................................... ................. ..... 10 8
I A m C ro ss .............. ... .. ......... ... .......... ................. ......... .... ................. 10 9
N o te s .............. ... .............. ....... ........................................................................... 1 11

5 THE FAILED CAMPAIGN OF 1852: WHIGGING OUT ................ ............... 118

T he D ictator .............. ................................................. .............. ..... ... .. .......... 119
W hy I A m a W hig .................. ... ............ ............. ....... ....... .. ................. 120
F o u rierism ................ .................... .. ........... ......... ... ...... ... 12 2
T he 1852 C anv ass ............... ... ... .. ...... ........................... .. .... ........... ........ 12 7
Election Results: The W higs at Salt R iver ..................................... ...................... 131
K ill S ew ard ............... ................................................................. ............. .... 13 3
N o te s ....................................................... .............. ............... 13 5

6 THE CAMPAIGN OF 1856: REPUBLICAN REDEMPTION .............................. 142

The D rum beat of the N ation ........ ..... ... ............................... .. ..... .............. 143
Bloody Kansas: The Great Battle Yet to Come ........................................................ 146
C all It R epub lican .............. ...... .. .... ..... .... .... .. .... ......... ... ... ....... 14 8
A G igantic C onfederacy of C rim e ..................................................... ............ ...... 150
G reeley Q uits ......................................................................... ... ....... ... ........... 151
T h e L better ........................ ........................... ............................................... 15 3
T he P athfinder of the W est .................... .. ............................................................... 155
Free Men, Free Speech, Free Press, Free Territory, Fremont.................................. 158
Election Returns: A Shade of Doubt .................................. 159
The Sinew s of W ar ................ .. ...... ..... ... .. .. ... ... ...... 16 1
N otes ............................................................................... ... .... ... ....... 162










7 THE TRIBUNE AT HARPER'S FERRY: HORACE GREELEY ON TRIAL ......... 170

T he T tribune at H arper's Ferry ....................................................... .......... .......... 171
T he E v id ence .............................. ................................................ ... .. 174
The Raid: Historical Background....... ........... ................ 175
The M making of a M artyr .......................................................... ..................... 178
Horace Greeley on Trial ........... ............... .................. 180
H ig her L aw ................................. ............................ ...................................... 182
Trial by Press ................................................................................... .. .......... .... 183
In the Shades of M onticello .............................................................. ................... 186
N o te s.. ........... ... ..................................................................................... ... 1 8 8

8 THE 1860 CAMPAIGN: SPLITTING RAILS .................................................... 196

M y T im e Is A absorbed .............................................. ...................... ..................... 197
The Log C abin Cam paign Revisited ............................................. ................ ...... 201
T he G great E ndeavo r ........................... .......................................... ..................... 203
Incid ent at the A sto r ............................................................................ ............ ... 2 04
T he P ast Is D ead .................. .................................. ........ 206
B lack R republicans ..... ... ...... ......................... .... ...... ...... ... ..... ............ 209
P laying Possum : The 1860 C anvass ........................................................................ 211
E lectio n R esu lts .................... ...................................... ............ .......... ................ 2 14
N o te s ... ................ .......................................................................................... 2 16

9 CON CLU SION ................ ....... ................. 224

G reat, Just, and T rue E positions ............................................ .......... ............ ... 225
B ru tu s G ree ley ....... ...................... .... .................................................................... 2 2 7
T he A m erican C onfl ict .............................................................. ............. 230
T oo M u ch F aith ......... ............ ................ .. ................. ......... .... ..... 23 1
G reeley's E stim ate of L incoln ............... ................................................................ 234
A Whig, a Republican, and a Democrat, Too .......................... ... ............... 235
Greeley in His Own Words................. ............... .............. 238
D ied of a B roken H eart ................................................................. ...................... 239
The Firm : Birth, W ork, Death, and Rebirth ....................... ............... ................... 241
N o te s .. ........ ... ..................................................................................... 2 4 6

R E FE R EN C E S ....................................... ........ .... .......... 255

B IO G R A PH IC A L SK ETCH ............ .......................................................................... 266







vi















Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy


THE FIRM OF GREELEY, WEED, AND SEWARD:
NEW YORK PARTISANSHIP AND THE PRESS, 1840-1860

By

Gregory Alan Borchard

May 2003

Chair: William McKeen
Major Department: Journalism and Communications

The firm of Greeley, Weed, and Seward led a revolution in communications and

national politics by promoting causes, parties, and candidates beyond the conventions of

the second party system. The firm led opposition to Jacksonian Democrats by advancing

Republican institutions that survived the trials of war. They championed rights and an

economy that were built on free labor, free soil, and a popular press driven by sales.

The concerted partisanship of New Yorkers Horace Greeley, Thurlow Weed, and

William H. Seward on behalf of Whig and Republican agendas forever changed the

landscape of U.S. political campaigns. Weed, editor of the Albany Evening Journal,

provided New York's political capital to back the firm's projects. William H. Seward

represented state and national constituents as a high-ranking Whig and Republican

official. Greeley, the unofficial leader of the triumvirate, provided one of the nation's

leading journals as a mouthpiece for social transformation.








The firm placed the press, especially Greeley's New York Tribune, at the center of

presidential campaigns. Greeley, Weed, and Seward empowered previously

disenfranchised voters, and in so doing helped solidify the role of the Republican Party in

the nation's third party system.

This dissertation analyzes the role of the firm in the development of the third party

system. In the Age of Jackson, Greeley, Weed, and Seward forged tactics commonly used

by modem campaign strategists, but historians have yet to recognize the firm's role in

founding the new political order. The dissertation features Greeley's publications and

private writings between the famous "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too" campaign of 1840 and

the election of Abraham Lincoln. It cites the letters and manuscripts of Greeley, Weed,

Seward, and their associates to shed new light on previous interpretations of Whig and

Republican agendas.

The three allies combined New York's dominance in the print industry with

political campaigns to form a national agenda that outlived the interests of Southern

Democrats. This account analyzes the firm's creation of a discourse among members of

the new representative democracy and the importance of the press in determining the

success or failure of subsequent campaigns.













CHAPTER 1
INTRODUCTION

The firm of Greeley, Weed, and Seward combined editorial brilliance with

revolutionary campaign tactics to produce an enduring style of campaign politics in the

United States. Under the triumvirate's leadership, the antebellum penny press, especially

Horace Greeley's New York Tribune, served as a mouthpiece for constituencies that

formed prior to the Civil War. Thurlow Weed, editor of The Albany Evening Journal,

and William H. Seward, Whig and Republican statesman, advanced a national agenda by

influencing the political machinery of New York and Washington, D.C., while readers of

the Tribune formed an increasingly sophisticated and democratized electorate.

The firm combined the commercialization of news with presidential campaigns to

attract support for a national agenda. Campaigns tailored the images of candidates and

platforms to the desires of energized voters. In so doing, firm members held separate but

compatible goals: Greeley sought the power of the printed word; Weed sought the wealth

of political brokering; and Seward sought the distinction of elected office. No one of the

three men apparently wanted what the other two desired, but together they made an

alliance that spearheaded national policy for more than 30 years.

On notable occasions, the partnership failed in attaining its partisan goals, but on

just as many, if not more, it succeeded spectacularly.2 As early as 1838, Weed and

Greeley's publications advanced with Seward a federal government that served states'

interests across sectional lines. And in 1840, the election of Whig candidate William

Henry Harrison catapulted the firm into national prominence.3 With the help of expanded






2

suffrage, a mobilized electorate, and patronage, the firm promoted in the early 1840s a

string of other successful Whig candidates for local, state, and national office.4

All along Greeley, Weed, and Seward objected to Andrew Jackson's beneficiaries,

members of the Democratic Party, who had insisted on freedom from a strong central

government but enjoyed the spoils of Jackson's victory. Jackson's "Caesarism," an

apparent contempt for the separation of powers and the rule of law, genuinely appalled

members of the firm, and they tried to rally politicians and voters behind a crusade to

save the Revolutionary experiment in republican self-government.5 In speeches,

editorials, and political platforms, firm members pronounced beliefs in more than just

material gain: They emphasized the rights to work and live freely and to secure the

blessings of liberty.6

The ambitions of Greeley in particular surpassed the achievements of partisan and

non-partisan peers during the second party system. Between the elections of 1840 and

1860, during his tenure as a Whig and Republican leader, Greeley sought economic,

political, and moral change to improve the social order, often defying the interests of the

Democratic status quo.7 The liberal scope of news and opinions published in the Tribune

contributed to his popular remembrance as a reform-minded advocate.8 Under Greeley's

editorship, the Tribune and allied, regional newspapers provided a range of aspiring, third

party candidates the opportunity to espouse the right to work, travel, invest, and prosper.9

Greeley's partnership with Weed and Seward developed Whig and Republican

agendas, candidacies, and campaigns by combining the broad press coverage with

commercial and partisan efforts. The firm championed a loose-knit coalition of

homesteaders, abolitionists, free laborers, and businessmen, who both objected to the rule






3

of elite and demanded newly heralded rights.1o Greeley used the Tribune, his anti-

Jacksonian "organ" to align candidates and parties in the new political system, which all

stemmed from his dominance of the journalistic medium."

The policies Greeley supported enjoyed unprecedented coverage at a level of

circulation no other newspaper could provide.12 A mass audience recognized him

appropriately as the leader of the powerful clique of editors in New York, a nexus for

Whig and Republican hopefuls.13 Other New York newspapers, among them the Times

and the Herald, simply covered political campaigns, but Greeley supported them both

directly and through the help of his staff Combined with Greeley's other publications,

such as the New-Yorker, Jeffersonian, and Log Cabin, the Tribune served as the leading

exponent of Whig and Republican agendas by its promotion of partisan literature,

advertisements, songs, and campaign-related propaganda.14

As a charismatic leader of the Whigs and Republicans, Greeley used appealing

symbols in his editorials to attract popular support for campaigns, candidates, and

policies. Folksy, log-cabin imagery appeared recurrently in the 20-year revolt he led

against the Democrats.15 The counter-revolution drew votes from the populist base of

Jackson's base of supporters by offering an alternative, an agenda built on free labor, free

soil, and free speech.16 Although many of the Tribune's 200,000 subscribers were

farmers in the Midwest, who had no sympathy with the newspaper's utopian appeals, few

of them could doubt Greeley's sincere devotion to a fairer distribution of wealth because

he lived up to his advice by giving away to his employees all but a few shares of the

Tribune's earnings. 17






4

The Tribune earned a loyal following, and in 1840, 1848, and 1860, Greeley's

favored presidential candidates won dramatic victories, and between victories, the

Tribune set the foundation for a constructive democracy. Greeley had recognized the

collapse of the Whigs in 1852 and embarked on an eight-year campaign for a Republican

presidential successor.18 With the rise of the Republican Party, the Tribune and allied

regional newspapers became a force that could make or ruin a presidency.19 Between

1844 and 1856, Greeley discovered the same populist formula that had worked in 1840

could lead Lincoln to victory in 1860. In order to preserve his editorial and political

ambitions, he even dissolved the partnership he had formed, the firm, with Weed and

Seward in 1854.20

Antagonisms with Democrats and Old Whigs persisted to a climax at the 1860

Republican Convention in Chicago, which featured Greeley's influence over delegates

and secured Lincoln's nomination.21 Weed, Seward, and other associates rarely

recognized Greeley's tireless sponsorship of rallies, parades, meetings, and dances, but

the tactics proved successful with Lincoln's election. Critics alleged Greeley was

inconsistent, vacillating, and even irrational; however, he helped forge a diverse coalition

of farmers, businessmen, abolitionists, and laborers, motivating them to build a new

revolution in U.S. politics based on republican principles.22

Statement of Purpose

The contributions of the firm's individual members can be found in individual

biographies, but rarely if ever has the firm been the focus subject of scholarly study.

Although Greeley's life has been documented in numerous secondary sources, his role in

the firm is less well known. The origin, activities, and demise of his partnership with

Weed and Seward remains the most intriguing, yet neglected stories in U.S. history.






5

This dissertation profiles the professional relationships among Greeley, Weed, and

Seward between the "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too" campaign and the election of Abraham

Lincoln. It explores the role of the Tribune, a leader in New York's penny press and a

contributing factor in the development of the nation's third party system. It combines

primary and secondary bibliographic materials in creating the history of a precedent-

setting institution in U.S. press and political history.

The breakdown of the second party system put the electoral process under great

stress, but Greeley held closely his convictions, which included faith in the power of

individual citizens to create a benevolent society.23 Telling indications of Greeley's

editorial skills are found in partisan articles, advertisements, and commentary from the

era.24 Synthesized with the wealth of the personal and private writings of Greeley, Weed,

and Seward, this dissertation reveals the workings of the 19th century's leading campaign

agencies and a sophisticated, modern communications networks.

Literature Review

This section examines representative literature that is most pertinent to the study

and identifies contributions the dissertation will make to accounts of the activities and

lives of Greeley, Weed, and Seward. The scholarly literature most directly related to the

subject is based on biographical sources written in the 19th century, which later appeared

in the works of progressive and cultural historians.

Historians who were Greeley's contemporaries featured romantic interpretations of

leading U.S. personalities and institutions James Parton, one of the 19th century's leading

biographers, compiled profiles in developing an account of the transformation of

antebellum political parties. Such histories noted the collapse of the first party system,

but they also preserved the enlightenment traditions from which the American Revolution






6

emerged. Parton's biographies, which included his Life of Horace Greeley, glorified the

heroic qualities of leading Founders and figures by mixing the premises of the

Constitution with a "great man" historical model. The contributions of remarkable

individuals were featured in the era's other histories as essential to continued growth.25

By the first half of the 20th century, progressive scholars reinterpreted the role of

"heroic" figures such as Greeley and suggested that individuals impacted history

precisely because they addressed dominant political, economic, and ideological issues.

Attention shifted from biographies of "great" men to analyses of adverse social

conditions and the response or lack of response from historical players and agents.

Progressives interpreted the roles of editors and politicians in terms of their success or

failures in addressing social disparities and economic injustices.

Henry Luther Stoddard's biography, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader,

featured the progressive approach.26 Stoddard credited Greeley with the creation of the

Whig and Republican parties, but Greeley's tragic campaign in 1872 received due

attention, too. In-between the remarkable moments of Greeley's life, Stoddard

emphasized the role of the press in addressing critical issues. The thesis of his text was

formed by Greeley's attempt to find constructive solutions to critical, external

developments, which included passage of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, the collapse of the

Whig Party, and the rise of sectional hostilities.27

Consensus historians in the mid-20th century responded to progressive scholars by

minimizing divisions among segments of American society. They suggested the nation

worked in a holistic framework, and the press and other institutions acted in accordance

with the prevailing cultural climate of given eras. Consensus scholars suggested that






7

newspapers and other popular institutions reflected U.S. society in equilibrium. Their

response countered economic, ideological, and political divisions noted by progressives,

but consensus histories failed to explain national crises, such as the Civil War.

On one level, the cultural school, emergent in the early 20th century, represented an

interpretation of national history that was more holistic than the progressive approach;

however, cultural histories rarely featured the role of particular institutions or

personalities. According to John R. Commons, a leader of the cultural school, the Tribune

- not Greeley was "the first and only great vehicle this country has known" in the

advancement of constructive democracy.28

Commons' interpretation of 19th century political organization cast Greeley not as a

moral crusader or literary genius; rather, Commons concentrated on Greeley's role as an

economic practitioner and as a powerful voice for labor interests. The Tribune responded

to cultural forces that demanded a more equal distribution of wealth, property, and labor.

"Thus has the idealism of American history both issued from and counteracted its

materialism," Commons wrote. He cited the editorial columns of the Tribune from 1841

to 1854 as documentary records, and his examination of the "two main currents of

idealism passing through the brain of Greeley" revealed a constructive program for the

reorganization of society in the Tribune. "We hear much nowadays of the 'economic

interpretation of history,'" Commons wrote. "Human life is viewed as a struggle to get a

living and to get rich ... Judged by this test, Horace Greeley was the prophet of the most

momentous period of our history."29

The Republican Party was not an anti-slavery party but a homestead party,

according to Commons, and on this point its agenda was identical with that of the






8

socialist Workingmen's movement. The Republicans came into conflict with slavery

because slavery could not live on 160-acre farms. 3

Unlike the progressives, who emphasized the interplay between dominant and

subordinate ideology, neo-progressives historians cited the growing power of the press by

the mid-19th century to disseminate news to a large, commercial base. For neo-

progressive historians of the late-20th century, Greeley's actions represented remarkable

business skills. Appreciations for "great" personalities, as well as technological advances,

peppered neo-progressive accounts.

The variety of approaches applied by historians in studies of the 19th century has

remained fluid with new data and methodologies. The "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too"

campaign provided an example of the historical narrative that has been recently

reconsidered. For nearly a century, secondary historians commonly attributed the election

of Harrison to the near-drunk response of voters to a circus-like atmosphere during the

1840 canvass. The weight of historical interpretation focused subsequently on Greeley's

skills as a manipulator of the media and the masses.

In contrast, Michael Holt's epic The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party

suggested that a sophisticated Whig electorate responded to a canvass filled with deep,

economic and cultural issues. Harrison was elected, Holt argued, because voters

responded to Whig proposals in lieu of a depressed economy.31 "Events mattered," Holt

wrote. "They, and not just social structures, economic conditions, fixed political contexts,

or ideology, often shaped subsequent behavior."32 The Whigs Holt profiled were an

amalgam of National Republicans, state-rights Southerners and Nullifiers, and the bulk of

Antimasons and dissident Democrats angered by Jackson's "high-handed conduct" and






9

the depression of 1837.33 The 1840 election was not merely about hard cider and songs;

rather, the Whigs fashioned a political platform that worked for them.34

The press played no small part in the rise of the Whig Party, as well as subsequent

political campaigns, and Holt's organic history detailed the evolution of the Whig Party

until its dismemberment in the early 1850s.35 With the help of sophisticated data

collection techniques, he was able to compile statistical data that supported his argument

that Whig campaigns operated with very modem, calculated, demographic techniques.36

On popular and scholarly levels, Greeley has been remembered primarily as a

pioneer of the penny press. Holt was among the few to attribute modern campaign

techniques to Greeley, who targeted "the masses," rich in electoral votes, with popular

editorial content. Primary sources indicate that Greeley was regarded by many of his

contemporaries as an honest man with sincere desires for a more fair, free, and civil

society.37 The bulk of modern histories have accordingly used a progressive approach in

detailing the Tribune's significance.

In traditional histories, Greeley has been often ascribed the status of a "great man."

More than a few of Greeley's peers lambasted him, too, and a considerable strain of

progressive history supplies a skeptical treatment of his record. The observation that

resonated most loudly among Greeley's detractors was that he displayed a level of

irrationality in editorial policy, which stemmed apparently from his zeal for elected

office.38 It was a personality trait that led to the breakdown of relations with Weed and

Seward, and it resulted in Greeley's resignation from the firm.39

References to the partnership of Greeley, Weed, and Seward were found in

individual primary and secondary sources; however, none of the sources discovered






10

provided a profile of the firm itself Glyndon Van Deusen's biographies of leading Whigs

focused primarily on the split in the partnership of Greeley, Weed, and Seward. His

biographies individually, but not collectively, assessed the roles of the three.40

Weed's contributions to the 19"' century were historic. Van Deusen's biography of

the Albany Evening Journal editor supplied an array of important sources, based mostly

on Weed's masterful autobiography.4' Weed served a major role in journalism and

politics as an editor, writer, and party boss. His connections with the machinery of New

York and Washington, D.C., made it inevitable that stories should circulate about his lack

of character. He was portrayed repeatedly as "Fagin the Jew," or "The Lucifer of the

Lobby," but many of these tales were only "vicious and unfounded rumor," Van Deusen

wrote. In this category belonged the allegations that he extorted $20,000 from immigrants

at Castle Garden and despoiled Trinity Church of valuable property under the pretext of

building real estate improvements on Broadway.42

Seward's role as an anti-slavery advocate was equally controversial.43 His patrician

background put him at odds with Greeley's working-class agenda in their competing

quests for public office.44 Van Deusen's biography of Seward was one of the most

readable political biographies of the 19th century United States, a chronicle of Seward's

rise to prominence through elected and appointed offices.45 Van Deusen suggested

Greeley split with Weed and Seward because of their attention to overtures from

Nativists. After the collapse of the Whigs in 1852, Van Deusen wrote, Greeley blamed

Weed and Seward for succumbing to the "rotten" influences of former Whig associates,

too. Greeley publicly denied having dissolved his ties to the firm; however, when the






11

contents of his 1854 letter to Seward were published, according to Van Deusen, "It was

clear that Horace was suffering from a bad case of officitis [sic.]"46

Van Deusen outlined an otherwise neglected aspect of the feud between Greeley

and Seward by delineating the factions separating populist followers of Greeley and the

patrician-minded associates of Weed and Seward 47 At Weed's request, Greeley worked

tirelessly on Seward's behalf Greeley downplayed, perhaps too humbly, his role in the

Seward's elections by suggesting his editorial assistance was "worth nothing;"

nonetheless, Greeley believed that Seward's "irrepressible conflict" speech was so

important that it should be widely read.48 He insisted that the only way the Republicans

could triumph in 1860 would be to overcome the "terror of 'Sewardism and the higher

law'" by putting this speech in every house in the free states.49 At the same time, the

competing interests of the firm members contributed to the demise of their partnership.

Historian Kenneth Stampp cited such antagonisms in his account of events that

sparked the Civil War. And the War Came placed most responsibility for the war on the

peculiar insistence that the Union must be maintained solely for the principles of free

labor.50 He attributed a secondary level of causation to the personal disputes among

leaders, especially between Northern and Southern officials, radicals, and editors. Stampp

praised the press' role in the development of organized parties, but he condemned

Greeley's quests for office and his ambivalent editorials on the threats of secessionists."l

Romantic presentations of Greeley persist, despite recurring criticisms of the

Tribune's ambiguous editorial policy. Harlan Homer juxtaposed the lives of Greeley and

Lincoln, arguing that the two worked with similar beliefs and ideals throughout their

respective careers. Horner compared texts prepared by both individuals on the question of






12

slavery. The two almost repeat themselves, with Lincoln apparently following Greeley's

lead. Homer's history profiled the interrelationship of the pair and their works and shows

how they worked together, consciously or not, for a more humane society.52

Of all biographies concerned with the penny press era, perhaps none was written

with the credibility of James Parton's Life of Horace Greeley, an influential and

authoritative account of the man and his newspaper. It was published before many of

Greeley's highly documented appearances as a national political figure, nearly a full 20

years before Greeley's death. A second, updated account was published in 1872.

Parton's selection of quotes from primary sources indicates an unmatched intimacy

with Greeley's life story. Parton claimed that he began the project with a critical mind but

soon discovered worthy praises for Greeley's character. In minute detail, he unveiled

elements of Greeley's life, including his Scotch-Irish ancestors, his lineage, family tree,

and early childhood.4 Parton's primary texts were mostly letters, some of which he

included with little attribution other than Greeley's name and the date they were written.

Other chapters contained extensive excerpts from lectures that in many cases were left

out of subsequent histories for reasons not wholly justified. A section detailing the

dispute between New York Times editor Henry J. Raymond and Greeley over socialism

was also astute. Raymond was concerned, Parton wrote, that Greeley had become

reckless in his advocacy for the abolition of private property. Not coincidentally,

Raymond left the eclectic Tribune before founding the Times.55

Other than the Tribune, Greeley's own historical works, especially his

groundbreaking The American Conflict, have been interpreted as secondary in importance

to his work as an editor, although the epic account of the Civil War was among the first






13

of its kind.56 His first historic move as a publisher came with the issue of the first New-

Yorker, March 22, 1834, "without premonitory sound of trumpet."57 In the 1830s and

1840s, the Jeffersonian and Log Cabin added to his resume, especially important in the

formation of the Whig's national agenda.58 These papers, Greeley's scholarly work, and

his polemical publications deserve analysis beyond scant secondary references.59

Greeley's published work reveals the doctrine he proposed completely violated

Whig policy, and yet he was one of the party's leaders.60 His advocacy of homestead

exemption, for example, which prevented settlers from losing their land as a form of

collateral against any debts incurred, put him in alliance with New York editor George

Henry Evans of the Working Man's Advocate, who also agitated for land reform.61 The

policy was more socialist than Whig, but shrewd leaders such as Greeley and Gov.

Hamilton Fish of New York recognized that the Nativists had capitalized on worker

discontent with traditional bank and tariff doctrine. Greeley and Fish subsequently

endorsed the Homestead Act because they reckoned it would encourage enterprise and

strengthen devotion to property rights 62

Fish became the curator of the Thurlow Weed collection, which is currently

maintained by the University of Rochester. Duke University provided copies of Greeley's

handwritten letters and memos from his personal collection. Private papers from both

collections are cited throughout this dissertation.63 Letters from Greeley to Weed, and

Weed to Greeley were featured according to their illustration of key events, as were the

correspondences of Lincoln, Seward, Granger, and a host of the 19'h century's key

figures. The author's notes on works at the Library of Congress are also cited in this

dissertation.4 Curators of the HarpWeek Web site have done a remarkable job of






14

cataloguing and citing historical information related to their collection of campaign-

related materials; however, most of the letters in the collections of Greeley and Weed

were not indexed, which made reading them a difficult but rewarding endeavor.65

This study adds to the literature of the New York press by both building on the

work of past historians and adding an important institution to scholarly discussion. It

illustrates the nature of relationships among Greeley, Weed, and Seward by citing the

artifacts left by them in print, office, and party. It also provides an overview of a

communications network, whose New York base dominated the political machinery in

the antebellum era. The synthesis of evidence left by the firm with scholarly

interpretations provides the reader with a vision of the powerful firm of Greeley, Weed,

and Seward previously hidden by biographical accounts of individual personalities.

Significance of Historical Research

One of the most significant and potentially rewarding challenges in developing a

study of the firm from 1840 to 1860 was identifying facts that historians have either

neglected to synthesize into secondary accounts or misinterpreted because of scholarly

bias. The key point of doing such a history depended on the development of an analysis

that both confirmed facts and shed new light on them.

Even fewer scholars have examined specifically the partisan, election-related

materials produced by the firm that determined the outcome of campaigns during the

second party system.66 The study examined the context in which the combined efforts of

editors, writers, and politicians thrived during the mid-19th century. At the same time, it

studied a particular aspect of Greeley's career that historians have only partially defined.

It suggested that in the elections between 1840 and 1860, key personalities, historical

events, and intellectual ideas transformed the Tribune and the Whig Party into institutions






15

that fulfilled an historic purpose: The Tribune survived the sectional crises of the 1850s,

and the Whig Party did not; however, Greeley's editorial skills preserved the most

resilient aspects of his early publications to create a Republican policy that endured.

After the Civil War, historians agreed that the firm played a determining role in

setting the agenda of the second party system, but few accounts articulated its impact on

subsequent campaigns. Fewer press histories have explored the era between the first

Whig and Republican presidents as a critical subject despite its enormous impact on

modern media. This dissertation sought enduring issues by implementing untapped

sources and contemporary methods. The sources cited throughout this dissertation were

intended to provide a clearer window into the firm's political dynamic. 67

When literature cited the association of Horace Greeley, William H. Seward, and

Thurlow Weed, it commonly referred to it as "the firm of Seward, Weed, and Greeley."

Greeley himself referred to his partnership as the firm of "Seward, Weed, and Greeley,"

as reflected in the title of Chapter 38 in his autobiography.68 Weed also referred "the firm

of Seward, Weed, and Greeley."69 For the purposes of this dissertation, which emphasizes

the importance of the Tribune's effect on partisan politics, "the firm" was recast as

"Greeley, Weed, and Seward" to give Greeley an appropriate amount of credence.

Methodology

Editorials and articles from the Tribune, reflections of Greeley's motives, were

supported by correspondences between his journalistic and political allies and

antagonists. The context of Greeley's specific role was developed with references to

other prominent publications, especially New York's powerful Times and Herald, and

Weed's Albany Journal.70 Additional newspapers, which included New York's literary

journal Harper's Weekly, were analyzed on the basis of their contribution to key events in






16

19th century. Perspectives from outside New York were partly found in The Staunton

Spectator and The Valley Spirit, Chambersburg, Pa.71 Other newspapers in the South

were cited throughout the study, too, but the featured papers most appropriately depicted

the discourse between Northern and Southern interests Democratic, Whig and

Republican from the perspective of the firm.

In the 1840s and 1850s, the split between Northern and Southern Whigs became

acute, and publications allied with the Tribune, such as the staunch Republican Chicago

Tribune, took on a greater strategic importance.72 As the Whigs evolved into the

Republican Party, newspapers throughout the nation took on greater developmental and

cultural importance, but the newspapers cited revealed the central role of the Tribune as a

mouthpiece for Whig, Republican, Northern and ultimately Union ideals.

Special attention was paid to the editorials and articles written in the Tribune in the

days and weeks immediately preceding and following the elections of 1840, '44, '48, '52,

'56 and '60. In determining the scope of materials to be studied, the months of October

and November played a significant role in the analysis of the firm's campaign efforts.

Reviews of microfilm through entire yearly issues revealed that the efforts of editors to

make their partisan voices heard registered most loudly in the weeks before and after

each election. Significant statements were published in non-election months and years,

but the bulk of appropriate material from the Tribune in this study stemmed from a two-

month combination of pre-election commentary and post-election results.

Limitations were placed on the domain of data collected. Primary sources were

featured if they were written between 1840 and 1860 because the narrative provided a

chronology that limited study to events that occurred in the 20-year period. Events and






17

sources that fell outside this range were included only if they bore a direct value to the

study's sources and chronology. Conditions were also placed on the content of source

materials. Materials from Democratic newspapers were included only when they

provided direct commentary on the Tribune or other Whig and Republican publications.

The study set the foundation of the second party system on the party press era

(1783-1833) but did not discuss overtly the function of the first party system or the

nation's first editors.73 Conclusions about the impact of the penny press era were limited

to the cumulative effect of New York's penny press on national political issues. The

intent of the study was not to provide a dialectic interpretation of Democratic partisanship

synthesized with Whig and Republican views; rather, it emphasized the role of the firm in

transforming national policy.

Web sources allowed strategic limitations on the volume of content. Key word

searches on computer databases assisted in providing narrow pools of articles and

campaign documents. Searches by key word included identification of the recurring

people, places, and issues associated with the study. The following words produced the

most significant hits at sites, which included HarpWeek, the Library of Congress, and the

Valley of the Shadow: "Greeley," "Tribune," "Whigs," "Republicans," "penny press,"

"Harrison," "Clay," "Taylor," "Scott," "Fremont," "Lincoln," "Weed," "Seward," and

"campaigns." The same key words were identified visually in microfilm searches.74

Primary documents were interpreted using the theoretical designs proposed by

Start and Sloan, which integrate methodological schools.75 The schools drew from

historians who focused on nationalist, romantic, developmental, progressive, consensus,

and cultural approaches. The progressive and cultural schools contributed most to this






18

study. When combined, these two approaches addressed the unique roles of Greeley and

the Tribune as shapers of ideology and reflections of U.S. culture before the Civil War.

The study featured a distinct interrelationship between the firm and the social

context in which its members lived. The political ambitions of the firm could not be

separated from the complex political issues of the era, which included slavery,

temperance, and homestead and tariff legislation, among the Tribune's daily features. The

bibliography included the broadest available range of primary artifacts from the era, such

as correspondences, legal documents, private letters, and unpublished manuscripts.

In citing primary and secondary sources, the research addressed issues of causation,

the verifiability of historical facts, and interpretive bias in order to construct a narrative as

close to true events as possible. One of the first steps taken to address such issues was

with the development of an evolving bibliography, which consisted of letters, journal

articles, biographies, newspaper articles, scholarly accounts, and campaign documents. It

remained open to the addition of new sources, too, from a collection of 19th century

campaign materials that has yet to be featured in secondary or scholarly literature.

The secondary accounts, while carrying the weight of academic credibility, begged

the most scrutiny. Scholarly interpretation of Greeley and the Tribune has been

necessarily broad, and at the same time, it has produced accounts of poor quality or

biased research agendas. While part of the task of this study consisted of finding fresh

evidence, it also sifted through literally hundreds of interpretations, a number of which

were either problematic or exposed room for additional study.

For example, a number of histories demonstrated a tendency to assess the character

of anti- or pro-slavery advocates in contemporary terms rooted in civil-rights






19

consciousness. Such an approach imposed a level of present-mindedness on an era of

history that operated under circumstances remarkably different than later conditions. In

an attempt to check present-minded interpretations, the language of primary documents

was interpreted by immersion and relative to the texts of the era.76

Two types of evaluation were used to authenticate sources and to establish

credibility and understanding of their content: 1) External criticism, which addressed

authorship and dates of the sources through analysis of content and comparison of

various texts, if possible with the original record; 2) Internal criticism, which addressed

the credibility of the sources, as well as determining literal and real meaning of words,

including colloquial expressions, terms, and concepts from the period. Articles were

cross-referenced with other newspapers to identify key figures and events when particular

details were otherwise ambiguous.77

The study focused on the partisan agenda of the firm prior to the Civil War because

it is an area yet to be explored in press-related terms. It represented events, people, and

the cultural contexts that may have contributed indirectly to the war itself, without

making claims of causation: To do so would express the fallacy of direct, singular

causation, which plagues secondary accounts.78

Primary sources included the private papers of Horace Greeley and Thurlow Weed.

The letters of Abraham Lincoln were secured from the Library of Congress Web site.79

Newspaper articles were selected from the microfilm and microfiche collections of The

New York Tribune. Original copies of the Log Cabin were reviewed at the Library of

Congress. Other primary sources include the letters and speeches of contemporaries as

preserved in Duke University's Horace Greeley Collection and the Thurlow Weed Papers






20

at the University of New York, Rochester. The most illustrative primary sources included

the indexed campaign materials at the HarpWeek Web site, which featured artifacts of the

social transformation between 1840 and 1860. This transformation can be discovered in

campaign paraphernalia, editorials, and even satirical cartoons that continue to offer

constructive interpretations of the second party system.80

The documents in the Greeley and Weed papers were photocopies of their private

papers, which included letters from Whig and journalistic associates. Of particular

interest were the letters to Weed from Greeley (and vice versa.) The letters also included

early correspondences with Seward, Webster, Granger, and other early Whig influences

through Reconstruction. A few of the most remarkable letters from the collections have

been typeset in the biographies and autobiographies of the primary subjects. In such

cases, the accuracy of the transcribers was verified with the original text.

No such transcription existed for the majority of letters in the collections, and the

author relied on his first-hand readings of the manuscripts. The physical condition of

these primary documents was at times poor, but the letters provided some of the most

direct primary evidence concerning the nature of Whig and Republican partisanship and

opposition to Jacksonian Democracy. Elsewhere, the workings of Greeley's "fevered

brain" were apparent in the erratic or scribbled-like quality of his writing.81

The combined collections provided access to Greeley's most private thoughts,

which created some of the 19th century's most enduring ideas and political platforms.

Emersion in secondary accounts revealed that scholars have yet to provide a

comprehensive analysis of Greeley's writings despite more than 130 years of study.82






21

Structure of Dissertation

The partisanship of the firm is presented in narrative form with two major concepts

tying the thesis together. Chapters 2 to 5 provide an overview of the firm and the second

party system. The chapters analyze presidential campaigns between 1840 and 1852,

which include the firm's greatest victories and defeats. The pre-Republican elections

supply a context for interpreting the firm as an institution that influenced the world in

which Greeley, Weed, and Seward lived.

Chapter 2 sets the historical background and context for the "Tippecanoe and Tyler,

Too" campaign. It profiles the dynamics of the second party system by providing an

introduction to Weed, Seward, and other personalities, who would compete for a spot in

the political landscape of subsequent campaigns. It features Greeley's use of modem

campaign tactics, which included pre-election projection and image promotion. Chapter 3

introduces candidates James Knox Polk, Henry Clay, James G. Birney, and the evolving

Whig establishment. It reviews the context in which the penny press emerged by focusing

on Greeley's contribution to the circulation-driven industry. Chapter 4 introduces Whig

candidate Zachary Taylor and provides an account of his surprise victory. The chapter

also describes the impact of the death of Taylor, who was the second Whig president to

die in office, on Greeley, Weed, Seward, and the nation. Chapter 5 reviews the failed

campaign of 1852 and the rise of the sectional hostilities. Greeley's apprentice and

nemesis, Henry J. Raymond of the New York Times, played a significant role in the 1852

election, and his role as a partisan editor is featured accordingly.

The second set of events and characters featured provide an account of the rise of

the Republican Party in the elections of 1856 and 1860. Chapters 6 to 8 profile Greeley's

leadership role in the new, third party system. This part of the narrative adds to the








chronology of previous chapters, but it also provides a context for the events that led to

the Civil War. It balances the arguments of the abolitionists and pro-slavery partisan

materials as they appeared in newspapers across the country.

Chapter 6 features the campaign of 1856 as the Republicans' first organized

attempt to capture the presidency after Pierce and a Democratic Congress failed to quell

violence in Kansas. The chapter also explains factors that contributed to the dissolution of

the firm of Greeley, Weed, and Seward, a landmark event in determining the subsequent

election of Abraham Lincoln. Chapter 7 brings the firm's influence to a climax. It

features the events at Harper's Ferry and John Brown's trial as a defining moment in the

careers of Greeley, Weed, and Seward. It cites articles from Northern and Southern

papers, whose editors were already at war over sectional interests, in determining the fate

of John Brown. Chapter 8 focuses attention on the Republican convention in Chicago. It

explains how Greeley used tactics similar to those in the Harrison campaign to secure

Lincoln's presidency. It brings to a conclusion his relationship with the firm: Weed had

expected Seward would be the next president, but Greeley's role in denying the success

of the endeavor changed the course of U.S. history.

The Conclusion assesses the legacy of the firm's victories, which were tempered by

the national tragedies of war. It explains how the firm succeeded in creating the third

party system and contributed to problems associated with it. The Conclusion focuses on

Greeley's contributions to a liberal-democratic discourse and assesses his role in the

formation of the Republican Party. It cites his campaign for the presidency in 1872 as a

closing chapter in the era of the New York penny press.






23

Implications

The personalities of Greeley, Weed, and Seward were complex, but their characters

could be at least partly discovered in their personal letters and papers and the reflections

of their contemporaries. Their psychological dispositions were also partly revealed in the

general legibility of their letters and personal memos. Greeley's writings provided an

especially intriguing sample of the troubled mind of a 19th century intellectual giant.

What made Greeley's life in particular even more remarkable was the controversy

that surrounded him. During his life and afterwards, he was both lambasted as a self-

seeking, office-driven pundit and received as a champion for fairness and civility.83 As a

result, subsequent generations of historians have been divided in assessments of his

character: Some have praised Greeley's altruism and portray him as an honest reformer;

others have ascribed to him egomaniacal motives that were influential but vain.84

In spite of past and more recent detractors, the professional masterpiece of Greeley

and the firm was their concerted challenge to the Democratic status quo over a 20-year

period.85 This study placed the development of an Anti-Jackson counter-revolution

primarily in the hands of this three-member institution. It cited Greeley's work with the

Tribune, Weed's published opinions and his behind-the-scenes maneuvers, and Seward's

official statements and actions as the driving force behind the development of a lasting

democratic discourse in U.S. history.

Holt has paid particular attention to the response of the Whigs to socio-economic

conditions, but the focus of his approach was primarily on the political aspects of events

in the antebellum era. This dissertation featured Greeley as a leader who was committed

to journalism as an industry and a civic endeavor. It discovered a figure that has been

either misunderstood or misrepresented by scholars, one that was simultaneously creative






24

and conservative: Despite evidence that suggested Greeley did not completely abandon

his own interest in political office, this study argued that he pursued an idealistic interest

in the material and moral well being of the nation.86

The editor of the New York Tribune, Whig Party apologist, Republican ally and

Democratic presidential nominee in many ways was a renaissance man. His genius was

his ability to register in print the voices of his readers, constituents, partisan spokesmen,

and himself 87 Evidence in the literature and propaganda from the campaigns of 1840,

'44, '48, '52, '56 and '60 revealed his model of a movement that bridged across sectional

lines and built a coalition, the Republican Party, which survived the trials of war.88

Gaps in the historical record of the national antebellum discourse have yet to be

filled, but the primary importance of the Tribune is clear. It developed relative to other

national publications, especially New York's powerful Times and Herald, which were in

turn influenced by their proximity to the nexus of Whig activity the firm of Greeley,

Weed, and Seward.89 This dissertation provides an account of the firm as a force behind

an internal, national revolution by introducing three characters primarily responsible for

building the third party system.

Notes

Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 171.
2 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 171, 172.

3 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 113.
From the "slouching Whig defeat of 1836," wrote Greeley, "lay the germ of the
overwhelming Whig triumph of 1840."









4 Ronald P. Formisano, "Differential-Participant Politics: The Early Republic's
Political Culture, 1789-1840," The American Political Science Review, 68 (1974), 479-
483.

Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), xiii.
6 Daniel Walker Howe, "The Evangelical Movement and Political Culture in the
North During the Second Party System," The Journal of American History, 77, 4 (March
1991), 1216-1239.

7 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, Thurlow Weed, Wizard of the Lobby (Boston: Little,
Brown and Co., 1947), 253, 254. "A beaming smile, a smile of unspeakable triumph,
illuminated the face of Horace Greeley as he sat amid the Oregon delegation. The great
moralist and disappointed office seeker was happy," Van Deusen wrote. "The great
endeavor [to elect Seward] had ended in a great defeat."

8 John R. Commons, "Horace Greeley and the Working Class Origins of the
Republican Party," Political Science Quarterly, 24 (September 1909), 466-488. "Greeley
was to the social revolution of the [1840s] what Thomas Jefferson was to the political
revolution of 1800," according to Commons. "He was the Tribune of the People, the
spokesman of their discontent, the champion of their nostrums."

9 Frederic Bancroft, The Life of William H. Seward (New York, London: Harper
and Brothers, 1900), 540; Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His
Autobiography andaMemoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84,
Vol. 2), 271.

10 Ronald P. Formisano, "Differential-Participant Politics: The Early Republic's
Political Culture, 1789-1840," The American Political Science Review, 68 (1974), 479-
483. Formisano suggested the Whig Party first emerged after the death of the National
Republicans in 1836. Patronage shifted from a patron-client relationship to one based on
party, and the influence of family and local notables could be expected to decline. In the
context of party, expanded suffrage, and a mobilized electorate, political party patronage
increasingly mediated between citizens and government, according to Formisano. In the
absence of parties before the 1830s, militia outfits, political societies, and secret orders
such as the Freemasons may have acted as recruiting and training agents for the political
establishment generally. "More than any other word, 'deference' characterizes eighteenth
century Whig political culture by referring directly to men's ideas and unspoken
assumptions about how society actually worked."

11 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 162, 163. From the Tribune: "The passage of the Nebraska









bill will arouse and consolidate the most gigantic, determined and overwhelming party
for freedom that the world has ever known."
12 James L. Crouthamel, Bennett's New York Herald and the Rise of the Popular
Press (Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press, 1989), x. The Herald, according to
Crouthamel, was not an "organ" of any party. The Herald spoke only for Bennett, who
was among the first to drive circulation-based papers into the forefront of mass media.
Bennett competed with Greeley in sales and succeeded remarkably by creating "an
attractive and useful product for which there was a widespread but untapped demand."
13 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 136.
"On the tenth day of April, 1841 a day of most unseasonable chill and sleet and snow, -
our city held her great funeral parade and pageant in honor of our lost President, who had
died six days before," Greeley wrote. "On that leaden, funereal morning, the most
inhospitable of the year, I issued the first number of The New York Tribune."

14 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467. "A more
pronounced party paper for popular circulation was needed, and in 1840, under the
auspices of the Whig State Committee, Mr. Greeley started the 'Log Cabin,'" Weed
wrote. "The 'Log Cabin' was zealous, spirited, and became universally popular. The
singing of patriotic songs at political meetings had its origin in that year, which was long,
and is even yet, remembered as the 'Tippecanoe and Tyler too Campaign [sic.]'"

15 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467. "While at
Albany during the year he was dieing the 'Jeffersonian,' Mr. Greeley was our guest, and
we became not only intimate politically but socially," Weed wrote. "I formed a high
estimate of his ability and character confidently anticipating for a career alike honorable
and useful to himself and his country."
16 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 468. Weed
attributed Greeley's alienation among New York Whigs to his chronic interest in
Fourierism, an American breed of communism, which was taking hold in Europe through
the teachings of Marx.

Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4Ih ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 129.

18 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 271. Weed
quoted Greeley's explanation for his actions in Chicago. "The past is dead," Greeley said.
"Let the dead past bury it, and let its mourners, if they will, go about the streets."









19 Frederic Bancroft, The Life of William H. Seward (New York, London: Harper
and Brothers, 1900), 540. Bancroft's analysis of Chicago convention noted the personal
dimensions of the characters involved arguably, accounts of creative fiction cross-
referenced with primary sources, which indicated the Chicago convention was a critical
moment in U.S. political history. "Lincoln's nomination so completely devastated
Weed," Bancroft wrote, "that he lost his habitual prudence and stoical self-possession,
and gave way, at first, to angry words and tears." See also: Thurlow Weed, Life of
Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a Memoir (Boston, New York:
Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 271.
20 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 315-318
[excerpts from Greeley's letter.] HORACE GREELEY TO WILLIAM H. SEWARD
[sic,] "New York, Saturday Evening, November 11, 1854, Governor Seward," Greeley
wrote. "The Election is over, and its results sufficiently ascertained. It seems to me a
fitting time to announce to you the dissolution of the political firm of Seward, Weed, and
Greeley, by the withdrawal of the junior partner."

21 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 490. Weed
cited the lyrics to one of the more popular tunes at Whig rallies. "What has caused this
great commotion motion motion motion, Our country through, It is the ball a-rolling
on, For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too, For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too. And with them we'll
beat little Van, Van, Van, is a used up man."

22 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868.)
Greeley's autobiography was the most valuable source about his life. It contained his
reflections on politics, religion, and journalism, as well as editorials written in the
Tribune and the other papers he helped to build. Greeley was complex in descriptions of
his beliefs, vacillating, even contradictory in discussions about socialism and
individualism.
23 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 468. Greeley's
sympathy with and friendship for "the toiling millions" led him to favor associations and
unions of laborers and journeymen, Weed wrote, organizations which, "countenanced by
the widely circulating 'Tribune,' became as formidable as they were mischievous."

24 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988.) Fischer's text contains an inventory of Whig campaign paraphernalia.

25 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855.)
James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley, Editor of the New York Tribune, From His Birth to
the Present Time (Boston: James Osgood and Co., 1872.)









26 Wm. David Sloan, Perspectives on Mass Communication History (Hillsdale,
NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, 1991), 138.

27 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946.) Stoddard connected Greeley with the naming of the
Republican Party, although his attribution of sources was not entirely clear.
28 John R. Commons, "Horace Greeley and the Working Class Origins of the
Republican Party," Political Science Quarterly, 24 (September 1909), 472.

29 John R. Commons, "Horace Greeley and the Working Class Origins of the
Republican Party," Political Science Quarterly, 24 (September 1909), 468-488.
30 Paul Goodman, "The Emergence of Homestead Exemption in the United States:
Accommodation and Resistance to the Market Revolution, 1840-1880," The Journal of
American History, 80, 2 (September 1993), 486. "A secure .. humble home," Greeley
wrote, "will yet be established as one of the cardinal principles of the Republican Polity."

31 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999.)

32 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), x.

33 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), 46.

34 Michael F. Holt, "The Election of 1840, Voter Mobilization, and the
Emergence of the Second American Party System: A Reappraisal of Jacksonian Voting
Behavior," A Master's Due: Essays in Honor of David Herbert Donald, ed. William J.
Cooper Jr., Michael F. Holt, and John McCardell (Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State
University, 1985), 16-58.

35 New York Daily Tribune, Jan. 26, 1854. The only question remaining from the
Kansas-Nebraska legislation was, according to the Tribune, "whether northern sentiment
can be aroused and consolidated in solid phalanx against the atrocious proposition. The
fools at Washington believe it cannot. We believe that it can! The United States will
extinguish slavery before slavery can extinguish the United States [sic.]"
36 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), x.









37 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.
38 Abraham Oakey Hall, Horace Greeley Decently Dissected, in a Letter on
Horace Greeley, Addressed by A. Oakey Hall to Joseph Hoxie, esq., (New York: Ross &
Tousey, 1862.)

39 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, Horace Greeley, Nineteenth-Century Crusader (New
York: Hill and Wang, 1953, 1964), 251.
40 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, Horace Greeley, Nineteenth-Century Crusader (New
York: Hill and Wang, 1953, 1964), 249-253.
41 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84.)
42 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, Thurlow Weed, Wizard of the Lobby (Boston: Little,
Brown and Co., 1947), 227.

43 Thorton Kirkland Lothrop, William Henry Seward (Boston and New York:
Houghton Mifflin Co., 1896), 55-61. Seward was elected governor of New York in 1838.
He began addressing slavery most outspokenly in 1848 Whig campaign for presidency
and delivered speeches on the subject in New York, New England, Pennsylvania, New
Jersey, Delaware, and Ohio. In February 1849, he was chosen Senator for New York.

44 Thorton Kirkland Lothrop, William Henry Seward (Boston and New York:
Houghton Mifflin Co., 1896), 1, 2. Seward's father, Dr. Samuel S. Seward, was a
physician of good standing, and his grandfather John Seward served in the American
Revolution with New Jersey's First Sussex Regiment.
45 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, William Henry Seward (New York: Oxford
University Press, 1967.) See also: John M. Taylor, William Henry Seward: Lincoln's
Right Hand (Washington, D.C.: Brassey's, 1996.)

46 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, William Henry Seward (New York: Oxford
University Press, 1967), 251.

47 John Bigelow, William Cullen Bryant (Boston and New York: Arno & The
New York Times, 1893.) The Post editor has been omitted from the bulk of secondary
texts analyzing Whig and Republican politics, although Bryant is an important character
in 19th century press history, especially the Liberal Republican campaign of 1872.
48 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 312.









49Frederic Bancroft, The Life of William H. Seward (New York, London: Harper
and Brothers, 1900), 518. On March 1, 1860, the Tribune suggested Seward's speech
would be of the greatest importance to the party if it should be widely read and that the
only way for the Republicans to triumph in 1860 would be to overcome the "terror of
'Sewardism and the higher law' by putting this speech in every house in the free states."

50 Kenneth M. Stampp, And the War Came: The North and the Secession Crisis
1860-1861 (Binghamton, NY: Louisiana State University Press, 1950), 136.

51 Kenneth M. Stampp, And the War Came: The North and the Secession Crisis
1860-1861 (Binghamton, NY: Louisiana State University Press, 1950.)

52 Harlan Hoyt Homer, Lincoln and Greeley (Urbana, IL: University of Illinois
Press, 1953.) Primary sources cited throughout include Greeley's book The American
Conflict (Chicago and Hartford: O.D. Case & Co., 1864-66, Vol. 1.), and David Mearns'
collection The Abraham Lincoln Papers (Garden City, NY: Doubleday and Co., 1948.)

53 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855.)
James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley, Editor of the New York Tribune, From His Birth to
the Present Time (Boston: James Osgood and Co., 1872.)

54 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 19,
20. "New Hampshire, the native State of Horace Greeley, was settled in part by colonists
from Massachusetts and Connecticut, and in part by emigrants from the north of Ireland.
The latter were called Scotch-Irish, for a reason which a glance at their history will
show," Parton wrote. "Londonderry, the capital of which, called by the same name, had
been sacked and razed during the [Irish rebellion of 1612.] The city was now rebuilt by a
company of adventurers from London, and the county was settled by a colony from
Argyleshire in Scotland, who were thenceforth called Scotch-Irish."

55 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855.)
James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley, Editor of the New York Tribune, From His Birth to
the Present Time (Boston: James Osgood and Co., 1872), 208-217; Horace Greeley,
Association Discussed; or, The Socialism of the Tribune Examined, Being a Controversy
Between the New York Tribune and the Courier and Enquirer, by H. Greeley and H.J.
Raymond (New York: Harper), 1847.
56 Horace Greeley, The American Conflict (Chicago and Hartford: O.D. Case &
Co., 1864-66, Vol 1 )

37 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 94.

58 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467. The first
number of the Jeffersonian appeared in February 1838.









59 Francis Brown, Raymond of the Times (New York: Norton, 1951), 5. "Shrill
partisanship" had no place in the Jeffersonian, according to Brown. "Instead, Greeley
filled its pages with general political news, with Congressional speeches, with articles on
political subjects, for he 'aimed,' he said, 'to convince and win by candor and
moderation, rather than overbear by passion and vehemence.'"

60 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), Chapter
38, "Seward, Weed, and Greeley," provided one of the most direct treatments of the
controversial partnership. Greeley reserved praise for Seward but acknowledges his
admiration for the man's dedication to the abolitionist cause. "Apart form politics, I like
the man [Seward], though not blind to his faults. His natural instincts were humane and
progressive," Greeley wrote. "Mr. Thurlow Weed was of coarser mould and fibre tall,
robust, dark-featured, shrewd, resolute, and not over-scrupulous, keen-sighted, though
not far-seeing. Writing slowly and with difficulty, he was for twenty years the most
sententious and pungent writer of editorial paragraphs on the American press."
61 Paul Goodman, "The Emergence of Homestead Exemption in the United States:
Accommodation and Resistance to the Market Revolution, 1840-1880," The Journal of
American History, 80, 2 (September 1993), 483; In 1846, Gerrit Smith, a wealthy upstate
New York landowner and a leader of the Liberty Party, and other antislavery leaders
endorsed homestead exemption.

62 Paul Goodman, "The Emergence of Homestead Exemption in the United States:
Accommodation and Resistance to the Market Revolution, 1840-1880," The Journal of
American History, 80, 2 (September 1993), 482; Michael Holt, "Winding Roads to
Recovery: The Whig Party from 1844 to 1848," Essays on American Antebellum Politics,
1840-1860, eds. Stephen E. Maislish and John J. Kushma (College Station, TX: Texas
A&M University, 1982), 122-165.
63 Horace Greeley Papers, Durham, NC: Duke University; Thurlow Weed Papers,
New York: University of Rochester.

64 Horace Greeley Papers, Durham, NC: Duke University; Thurlow Weed Papers,
New York: University of Rochester. Issues of the Log Cabin, reviewed at the Library of
Congress during the summer of 2001, were especially revealing.

65 Harper's Weekly [online]. New York: Harper's Magazine Co., accessed: Feb. 5,
2003; available at http://app.harpweek.com and http://elections.harpweek.com/. The Harp
Week Web sites featured articles from Harper's Weekly, a leading 19th century literary
journal, and political prints and cartoons. Political satirist Thomas Nast contributed to
Harper's Weekly throughout the late 1800s, and his work played a critical role in
Greeley's failed campaign during the 1872 election. The site included the work of artists
from Vanity Fair, Frank Leslie's Illustrated Weekly, and Puck. It archived and indexed
the Library of Congress' Collection of American Political Prints from 1766-1876. In









addition to explanations of each cartoon, the site contained biographies, explanations of
the issues, campaign overviews, and other relevant historical information.
66 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4 ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 126.
"More books have been written about Greeley than about any other American of the
period, except Lincoln," according to Emery.
67 George William Curtis wrote in Harper's Weekly, Jan. 5, 1854, that Greeley's
editorials had become the "drumbeat of the nation." Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace
Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 162-164.
"Greeley at once became the banner-bearer of a new party, the herald and harbinger of a
free Union," Stoddard wrote. "The daily issue of 'The Tribune' was a startling drum-beat
and 'The Weekly Tribune' became an incessant broadside."
68 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 311.

69 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 554.

70 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 171, 172. In 1838, Weed brought Greeley to Albany to edit
the Jeffersonian. "It would seem that no other three men could possibly be better fitted to
work together," Stoddard wrote. "Weed sought the power of politics; Greeley sought the
power of the printed word; Seward sought distinction in statesmanship. No one of the
three men apparently wanted what the other two desired."

71 Edward L. Ayers, "The Valley of the Shadow: Living the Civil War in
Pennsylvania and Virginia," [online]. Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia,
accessed: Feb. 5, 2003; http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/vshadow/vshadow.html; Both
newspapers, The Staunton Spectator and The Valley Spirit, are available at The Valley of
the Shadow project.
72 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 167. Joseph Medill aroused Republican followers in
Cleveland, Ohio, after becoming editor of the Chicago Tribune in 1856. Greeley
responded to Medill's query about the new Republican Party, "Go ahead, my friend, with
your proposed Republican party [sic,] and may God bless you," Greeley wrote. "I hope
you will have the best of luck. The time has indeed come to bury our beloved [Whig]
party; it is dead. But we have many fool friends who insist it is only in a comatose state
and will recover, but I tell them it is dead still, I dare not yet in New York announce the
demise of the party and call for the reorganization of a new one. But do you go ahead on
the Western reserve and commence the work. I like the name for it. If you can get the
name Republican started in the West it will grow in the East. I fully agree to the new
name and the new christening."









73 Wm. David Sloan, Perspectives on Mass Communication History, "The Party
Press, 1783-1833: Political Sycophant or Party Leader?" (Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence
Earlbaum Associates, 1991), 58-73. Historians have placed the party press between the
formation of the first party system and the collapse of the National Republicans.

74 Harper's Weekly [online]. New York: Harper's Magazine Co., accessed: Feb. 5,
2003; available at http://app.harpweek.com and http://elections.harpweek.com/.
HarpWeek offered access to Harper's Weekly, the "Journal of Civilization," a popular
19th century publication and a leader in covering the Civil War; Abraham Lincoln Papers
at the Library of Congress [online]. Galesburg, IL: Knox College, accessed: Feb. 5, 2003;
available at: http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/alhtml/malhome.html; Edward L. Ayers,
"The Valley of the Shadow: Living the Civil War in Pennsylvania and Virginia,"
[online]. Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia, accessed: Feb. 5, 2003; available at:
http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/vshadow/vshadow.html.
75 James Startt and William Sloan, Historical Methods in Mass Communication
(Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Earlbaum Associates, 1989.)
76 Gregory Borchard, "Civil Rights Consciousness: The Southern Press and the
15th Amendment," Master's Thesis, University of Minnesota, 1999. The author used a
similar approach in writing his master's thesis in which he analyzed editorials written in
three Southern newspapers at the passage of landmark civil-rights legislation. Issues of
the study included the necessity of interpreting texts without the biases of modern civil-
rights causes or the racial prejudices of 19t' century editors.

77 Allan Nevins, The Gateway to History (Garden City, NY: Doubleday & Co.,
Inc., 1962.)

78 Kenneth M. Stampp, And the War Came: The North and the Secession Crisis
1860-1861 (Binghamton, NY: Louisiana State University Press 1950.)

79 Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress [online]. Galesburg, IL:
Knox College, accessed: Feb. 5, 2003; available at:
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/alhtml/malhome.html.

80 Harper's Weekly [online]. New York: Harper's Magazine Co., accessed: Feb. 5,
2003; available at http://app.harpweek.com and http://elections.harpweek.com/.

81 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 315-
321. Greeley wrote Seward in 1854 complaining of apparent infirmities. "I have no
further wish but to glide out of the newspaper world as quietly and as speedily as
possible, join my family in Europe, and, if possible, stay there quite a time," he wrote,
"long enough to cool my fevered brain and renovate my overtasked energies."
82 Thurlow Weed Papers, New York: University of Rochester.









83 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.

84 Abraham Oakey Hall, Horace Greeley Decently Dissected, in a Letter on
Horace Greeley, Addressed by A. Oakey Hall to Joseph Hoxie, esq., (New York: Ross &
Tousey, 1862.) Hoxie compared himself to David taking on Goliath. His scathing critique
of Greeley's editorial and political policies was a radical departure from most texts. His
self-proclaimed mission was to point out "for posterity the hypocrisies, vanities, and
frivolities of some demi-god [Greeley] of a fanatical mob; and in demonstrating that the
patriotism of this demi-god was only a thin cloak that time rotted away."

85 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 166. Various accounts of the origins of the Republican Party
were reviewed. Stoddard recognized Greeley's direct role. He wrote that Greeley heard in
1854 from Asahel N. Cole, editor of the Genesee Valley Free Press, called a convention
to meet and organize a political party to oppose Douglas' Kansas-Nebraska legislation.
Cole asked Greeley to suggest a name. "Call it Republican no prefix, no suffix, just
plain Republican," was Greeley's brief, historic reply. "And, early in May, the name
Republican was 'flung to the breeze,' as country weeklies then loved to say pridefully,
from the masthead of the Free Press the first newspaper to display it."

86 A Memorial of Horace Greeley, (New York: The Tribune Association, 1873.)
Greeley ran for president, ironically, as a Democrat in 1872 against Republican
incumbent Ulysses S. Grant. He was defeated, due in part to criticisms from fellow
editors and newspapers, which ran scathing critiques of his political/editorial hybrid.
Greeley died heartbroken in a sanitarium shortly afterwards.
87 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), Chapter
38, "Seward, Weed, and Greeley."

John R. Commons, "Horace Greeley and the Working Class Origins of the
Republican Party," Political Science Quarterly, 24 (September 1909), 466-488.

89 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 171, 172.














CHAPTER 2
MARKETING THE HARRISON PRESIDENCY: THE LOG CABIN, HARD TIMES,
AND HARD CIDER, TOO

Horace Greeley, editor of the Log Cabin, enjoyed his first major political victory in

1840 with the election of Whig candidate William Henry Harrison to the presidency.

Greeley's role in the race revolutionized the art of campaign polemics. He was successful

because he tailored Harrison's image to meet the desires of an excited electorate.

Harrison was promoted as "the Log Cabin Candidate," which set the tone for one of the

first endeavors in mass marketing.'

The Log Cabin and other Whig publications circulated campaign proposals and

literature in the form of editorials, articles, advertisements, announcements, and

broadsheets. The successes of the Harrison campaign relied on a saturation of the

electorate with image-building materials. The campaign featured a host of material tokens

and paraphernalia to accompany the revelry of supporters.2

The Whigs maximized their support by developing ads that addressed the

struggling economy. Log cabins of the nation's westward settlements were co-opted as

symbols of freedom and security on an array of campaign materials. Greeley shaped the

Whigs' image into a desirable one by cross-marketing literature and propaganda with

assorted songs, ads, and material tokens. Newspaper and journal articles reinforced

Whig-organized activities including rallies, parades, meetings, and dances.









Greeley: A Marked Man

Greeley was "a marked person from his earliest childhood," according to

biographer James Parton. He was born in the farm town of Amherst, N.H., Feb. 3, 1811,

the third of seven children.3 Friends remembered him with "a vividness and affection

very extraordinary."4 His father had been reduced in the panic of 1819 from the position

of small farmer to that of day laborer. At the age of 15, Horace turned to an

apprenticeship in a printing office, then a tramp printer for extra income. The enterprise

failed, and he drifted east in 1831.

At the age of 20, he arrived in New York with just $10 to his name.5 He found

refuge in the midst of the first Workingmen's Party meetings, which organized for the

rights of laborers.6 For five years, he traveled throughout the state, sustaining himself as

an itinerant printer, reading voraciously between jobs. After part-time work as a

compositor, he landed a permanent position with the Evening Post. Shortly afterwards,

partner Francis Story and he set up a shop of their own and printed a small weekly on

contract. The main revenue from the newspaper came from lottery advertising, a

circumstance his rivals never let him forget.7

Greeley was 28 when he first met Thurlow Weed, boss of the New York Whig

Party. Weed took an interest in acquiring Greeley's services after reading the New-

Yorker, one of Greeley's first successful ventures. "In casting about for an editor it

occurred to me," Weed wrote, "that there was some person connected with the 'New-

Yorker,' a literary journal published in that city, possessing the qualities needed for our

new enterprise." Weed felt sure that "its editor was a strong tariff man, and probably an

equally strong Whig." He found Greeley in the office of the journal, "a young man with








light hair and blonde complexion, with coat off and sleeves rolled up, standing at the

case, stick in hand."8

Weed was in the process of producing the Jeffersonian, a news journal that featured

Whig activities. He sat down in the composing room with Greeley. When Weed informed

him of the object of his visit, Greeley was "surprised, but evidently gratified," Weed

wrote. Greeley suggested the name for the new newspaper, and Weed approved.9 The

first number of the i. l. .' *Pi- appeared in February 1838. The issued, dated March 3,

1838, marked the christening of the political firm of Greeley, Weed, and Seward.10

The Jeffersonian was not meant to be a party newspaper "in the ordinary

acceptation of that term." The purpose of the newspaper was to present "the views of

public men on both sides of the great political questions of the day, and to exhibit, as far

as may be, the sentiments and opinions of all."" Greeley conducted the journal with

"marked ability," Weed wrote, "discussing measures clearly, calmly, and forcibly,

exerting during the year of its existence a wide and beneficial influence."12 Greeley made

a point of avoiding the demagoguery common in newspapers of the Party Press, an era he

wanted to relegate to the past. "Shrill partisanship had no place in the Jeffersonian," he

wrote. Instead, Greeley filled the newspaper's pages with general political news,

Congressional speeches, and articles on political subjects, for he aimed "to convince and

win by candor and moderation, rather than overbear by passion and vehemence."'3

The life of the newspaper was relatively short, but it was instrumental in launching

Greeley's career. One year after the opening issue, Greeley announced he would be

moving on to greater pursuits. He thanked readers in the closing issue for supporting the

endeavor. He believed fully that he had made no assertion he "did not fully believe to be








true," nor had he advanced any arguments that he "did not honestly believe to be sound."

Greeley closed his labors with thi /I It, I .-..I. he wrote, "with a gratifying conviction

that they will have been regarded by his readers with a respect for his sincerity, however,

humble may be their estimate of his ability."14

The Mastermind and the Higher Law of the Whigs

Weed began a career of influence as an apprentice printer in upstate New York. 5

Between 1809 and 1817, he worked as a journeyman and became interested in politics as

a follower of DeWitt Clinton, a forerunner of the Whigs whose platform included

bIdrin,2 niiicn.il improvements for state and national infrastructures. Weed rendered his

editorial services in the 1824 campaign "but for which John Quincy Adams would not

have been President." By 1825, his work at the Rochester Telegraph helped launch him

to political power. He purchased the Telegraph and used it to promote his candidates.16

Weed built his reputation as an opponent of mob rule by blasting the "Caesarism"

of the Jackson administration. He held strong anti-Masonic principles in a day when

Masonry was a burning political issue. The Anti-Masonic Party with which Weed had

been affiliated raised funds to establish a newspaper at Albany, and Weed was made

editor of the Albany Evening Journal while he was still a leader in the Assembly.17

The Journal appeared in February 1830, and under Weed, it became the official

organ of the New York Whigs. Greeley and other Whigs gave Weed much of the credit

for electing Seward governor in 1838.18 During the 1840 campaign, Weed ran editorials

that strengthened the Harrison campaign. The Journal suggested the Whigs embodied

"the hopes of the humble of the privations of the poor .. the emblem of rights that the

vain and insolent aristocracy of federal office-holders have trampled on."19









Weed was loyal to Greeley. He consistently praised his associate despite their

prolonged business-related fallout. "Our sentiments and opinions of public measures and

public men harmonized perfectly," Weed wrote. "Our only difference was that upon the

temperance, slavery, and labor questions he was more ardent and hopeful. In this I gave

him credit for fresher and less disciplined feelings." Weed considered Greeley "unselfish,

conscientious, public spirited, and patriotic. He had no habits or tastes but for work,

steady, indomitable work."20 But after Greeley dissolved his association with the firm in

1854, he tempered praise of the junior partner reflected on letters he received from

Greeley, who persistently but fuik, I sought office, as "earnest and pathetic."'1

Greeley considered Weed a friend, too, although the two antagonized each other

over preferred candidates for particular offices.22 Weed was of "coarser mould and fibre"

[sic] than Seward "tall, robust, dark-featured, shrewd, resolute, and not over-

scrupulous, keen-sighted, though not far-seeing," Greeley wrote. "Writing slowly and

with difficulty, he was for twenty years the most sententious and pungent writer of

editorial paragraphs on the American press."23

Greeley did not hold the same disdain for Weed as he did for Seward because

Seward had what Greeley wanted most in life political office. Seward was bornm May

16, 1801, in Orange County, Warwick, Fla. His patrician background gave him a natural

advantage over Greeley in their quests for public office. Seward's father Dr. Samuel S.

Seward was a physician of good standing, and his grandfather John Seward served in the

American Revolution with New Jersey's First Sussex Regiment.24

Seward had previously been elected state senator in 1830. He lost soundly to

William Marcy in his first campaign for Governor of New York in 1834.25 Seward's rise









in the national political scene coincided with the Whig response to the 1837 panic. While

editing the Jeffersonian in Albany, Greeley wrote and reported legislative proceedings for

Weed's Journal and contributed to Seward's election as governor in 1838. After

Seward's election, Greeley, perhaps too humbly, downplayed his role in the election by

suggesting his editorial assistance was "worth nothing."26

Seward took notice of Greeley's skill in the 1838 and 1840 campaigns, and he

welcomed Greeley as a member of the firm. The two kept a cool distance throughout

their careers. Greeley admired Seward, "apart from his politics," he wrote, "though not

blind to his faults." Seward's natural instincts were "humane and progressive," and he

"hated slavery and all its belongings."27

The Second Party System

The second party system emerged from the early republic's absence of formal

parties. Prior to the 1830s, militia outfits, political societies, and secret orders such as the

Freemasons may have acted as recruiting and training agents for the political

establishment. Under Jackson, patronage shifted from a patron-client relationship to one

based on party. In the context of expanded suffrage and a mobilized electorate, political

party patronage mediated increasingly between citizens and government, and the

influence of family and local notables declined.28

The election of 1832 prompted the death of the National Republicans. Their base of

Northeastern elite was in disarray, and neither Anti-Masons nor Southerners could

support the Adams' old party.29 Demoralized and disheartened National Republicans

rallied and joined in the formation of the Whig Party under a creed that supported internal

improvements, protection of American industry, and a national bank, which was at the

heart of Adams' initial proposals.30








From the birth of the Whig Party in the winter of 1833-34 until its collapse in the

1852 campaign, members formed a federation of state and local organizations, each of

which were genuinely appalled by Jackson's "Caesarism." They objected mostly to

Jackson's alleged contempt for the separation of powers and the rule of law. Whig

platforms summoned voters to rally behind candidates in a crusade for the salvation of

the nation's republican self-government.3'

Diverging interpretations of James Harrington, an influential 17th-century

republican theorist, polarized the new two-party split. Harrington espoused a belief that

the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few would warp the republic into an

oligarchy. In order to avoid the control of many by a few, he argued, republics had to

possess an equitable distribution of wealth.32 Democrats on the Jefferson-Jackson axis

maintained that deviations in mental and physical capabilities among men were not great

enough to justify extremes in wealth holding. Andrew Jackson's famous veto of the re-

charter of the Second Bank of the United States was one of the most succinct examples of

Harrington's revolutionary theory of wealth distribution in action. Conversely, tariff

debates, common in Whig campaign literature, often addressed the importance of entail

and primogeniture as measures for correcting aristocratic wealth imbalances.33

Differences over a national economic policy came to a head with the panic of 1837,

which prepared voters for a change in executive administration. New York Governor

Marcy in his message to the legislature, Weed wrote, blamed the financial crisis on the

"unregulated spirit of speculation," which reached a culminating point with bank failures

in New Orleans. The commercial pressure soon led to similar disasters in Charleston,

Savannah, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York, when the panic became general.









Banks suspended specie payments, "fortunately while the legislature was in session, for

by a provision of law the failure to pay specie worked a forfeiture of their charter," Weed

wrote. Jackson pronounced the banks unsafe depositories for the public funds. In

response, the Whigs engineered the revolutionary campaign of 1840, and Greeley, Weed,

and Seward "overwhelmed the Democracy of the nation" as appointed leaders of the

campaign for a new administration.34

Prior to the Harrison campaign, New York had become "a hotbed of Whig

activities." New York City was rendered for some weeks, "a boiling cauldron of political

passions," Greeley wrote. The presses daily echoed the concerns "daily received" from

the merchants and bankers to avert bankruptcy. They voiced their concern about "the

daily tightening of the money market, and the novel hopes of success inspired in the

breasts of those who now took the name of 'Whigs.'"'35

The name "Whig," wrote Greeley, was a reference to party members' rcpu.ruin:

to unauthorized assumptions of Executive power." The party's integration of spiritual,

civic, and economic interests served as part of the inspiration among the electorate to

react against Jackson's administration.36 Greeley despised the elitism of the Democratic

Party and its opposition to free labor. He believed that Van Buren's election to the

presidency was a returned favor from Jackson, who laid "an iron rule," "Love me, love

my dog."37

Alarmed voters welcomed Whig proposals for abrupt, sweeping changes. The

promotion of tariffs and attacks on Jackson's bank policy were implemented into

campaign strategies as the economic conditions prior to 1840 worked against the

Democrats. A Whig festival at the Orange Hotel was typical of the celebrations of the








"glorious victory of the people over Loco-Foco Agrarianism, infidelity, & Federalism."

Participants rejoiced in "the triumph of Democratic Principles in this State."38

The public was also enticed to vote Whig through the distribution of enormous

collection of material tokens related to the Harrison campaign. While the Van Buren

campaign focused on particular issues related to labor policy, the array of Whig campaign

items reflected an active effort to promote a sense of economic security that would follow

under a new administration.39

Marketing the Harrison Presidency

The Whigs had become an amalgam of National Republicans, states'-rights

Southerners and Nullifiers, Anti-Masons, and dissident Democrats. In 1840, the newly

formed New York power trio of Greeley, Weed, and Seward led the party in advancing a

candidate to voters sufficiently angered by Jackson's "high-handed conduct."40

The election pitted incumbent President Van Buren, who was supported by the

beneficiaries of Jackson's affiliates, against a hungry party out of power. The Whig

nominee General William Henry Harrison had achieved marginal fame in the battle of

Tippecanoe.41 He had challenged Van Buren in the previous election in which the war-

hero image had worked well for him.42 As a regional Whig candidate, Harrison had

carried seven states Vermont, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Kentucky, Ohio, and

Indiana for 73 electoral votes.43 His military-hero image was a theme even more

enthusiastically exploited by his supporters in 1840.44

The firm used image advertising effectively by exploiting and inverting Jackson's

own campaign techniques for Harrison's benefit. Martin Van Buren, a pioneer in the art

of image making, ironically contributed to their success.45 The president and former vice

president had in 1828 melded Jackson's support in Tennessee and the West with his own









New York organization. He then won over leaders in Georgia, parts of Virginia, and the

Carolinas. Working from the top down, Van Buren drew primarily on state leaders like

Thomas Hart Benton of Missouri and urban leaders such as Alan Campbell of Louisville

to craft a national political organization on Jackson's behalf. In effect, Van Buren was

responsible for determining which issues were important to the electorate and how his

candidate would address them. When a local or state leader had committed to Jackson,

the members of his organization became Jackson's local "hurrah boys." These precinct-

level workers dropped literature throughout the community, managed rallies, and staged

the first national get-out-the-vote campaign in villages and towns on Election Day.46

Jackson's campaign harnessed the mass medium of the day, the printing press, in

two ways. First, it made heavy use of sympathetic newspapers. Campaign representatives

worked ardently to secure favorable stories about the hero of New Orleans. Second, the

Jackson campaign produced enormous numbers of pamphlets, handbills, broadsides, and

other printed literature, which were distributed throughout the nation. Jackson rallies

were staged to generate public enthusiasm. In addition to the predictable political

speeches, these events involved food, drink, parades, songs, and the distribution of

campaign literature. The candidate's nickname "Old Hickory" was celebrated at rallies,

too. Like the hardwood tree, Jackson had provided his toughness to his troops during the

War of 1812, and every Jackson rally gave away hickory brooms, canes, and sticks. On

city streets and in small town squares, Jackson supporters erected large hickory poles.

Like the buttons, bumper stickers, and yard signs of campaigns in the 20'h century, these

symbols were tangible signs of support for the candidate.47









The Whig Party's challenge to Democratic ascendancy peaked in a climate ripe for

political theatrics. During the Jackson and Van Buren administrations, the number of

participating voters more than tripled. Electors grew loyal to one or the other presidential

candidates, and by 1840, they were eager to decide which candidate should lead the

country. The Whig press appealed to the emerging mass audience for support with

content that targeted popular interests.48

The Whigs' economic interests concurred with the development of the commercial

press. The blossoming industry was utilized by playing a large role in disseminating the

news of party functions and promoting the political ideas and character of candidates.49

"The function of antebellum newspapers, which were the organs of political parties, was

to make partisanship seem essential to men's identities," according to Whig historian

Elizabeth Varon.50 At a time when spiritual transformation was part of civic life, Whig

rallies functioned as secular camp meetings. The Whigs practiced "secular revivalism."51

The Sabbatarian movement was part of the rise of the popular press. It contributed

to the development of the Whig agenda, too. Sabbatarians advocated the observance of

the Sabbath as a form of piety and political organization with techniques that mirrored the

Whigs' tactics of arousal and agitation among the masses. "It was not enough merely to

grant postmen a day of rest," according to historian Bertram Wyatt-Brown. "True

Sabbatarianism included the closing of bakeries stores, taverns, theaters and

offices."52 Whig activities were promoted by integrating fliers, pamphlets, and media

messages associated with the Sabbatarian temperance movement.

By 1840, Whig organizers had overcome their misgivings about the perils of mob

rule and exploited popular attachment to images that were associated with the








individualism and freedom of the American frontier. Democratic campaign materials

were less imaginative and less appealing than Harrison symbols.53 The differences

stemmed partly from nomination processes: The Whig Party tended to award its

nominations to non-political men of great popular renown, primarily war heroes long on

image and short on experience in public affairs; the Democrats most often chose

candidates on the basis of party service. By this line of reasoning, Whig candidates were

naturally suited to the new politics of popular entertainment and their material

components, and Democratic candidates were not.54

Homestead legislation, the charter of the national bank, and tariffs were features of

the campaign designed by Whig strategists, which resonated with the democratized

electorate. Jackson dismissed the tactics as little more than promotion of "Logg [sic]

cabins, hard cider and coon humbuggery," but the material remains of the campaign

indicate Whig campaign managers sought an active remedy for the panic of 1837.55

The Log Cabin

The Van Burenite Baltimore Republican, according to Greeley, had in December

1839 "sneered at the idea of electing Gen. Harrison" when it suggested that the Whigs

ought to "give him a barrel of HARD CIDER [sic]" and a pension of $2,000 a year and

allow him to "sit the remainder of his days in his LOG CABIN [sic] by the side of 'a sea-

coal' fire, and study moral philosophy."56 After the taunts were circulated in other

Democratic newspapers, Whig editors spun the commentary as a slur by Eastern office-

holding "pimps" against the great American yeomanry. They co-opted the reference and

turned it on its head by promoting Harrison as the "Log-Cabin Candidate."57

Harrison did own a log cabin in North Bend, Ohio, one that he had built for his

bride near the turn of the century. It earned him designation as "the farmer of North








Bend." He was in fact not born in a log cabin but in a fine two-story brick home at

Berkeley on the James River in Virginia, and at the time of the campaign, he owned a

palatial Georgian mansion in Vincennes, Ind.58

Prior to 1840, campaign artwork evoked the story of the nation. But in 1840,

glorifications of the Constitution, Lady Liberty, the ship of state, and the eagle gave way

to highly personalized symbols associated with particular candidates.59 Commenting on

the transformation, Philip Hone, a New York Whig, observed in his diary that party

banners and transparencies had transformed "the temple of Liberty" into "a hovel of

unhewn logs" and "the military garb of the general into the frock and shirtsleeves of a

laboring farmer." The American eagle was supplanted by a cider barrel, "and the long-

established emblem of the ship" was replaced by the plow. "'Hurrah for Tippecanoe!'" he

wrote, was heard more frequently than "Hurray for the Constitution!"60 Hone concluded

that the friends of Van Buren made their greatest mistake when, "by their sneers, they

furnished the Whigs those powerful weapons, 'log cabin' and 'hard cider' It makes a

personal hurrah for Harrison which cannot in any way be gotten up for Van Buren."'6

Greeley's Log Cabin was at the foundation of the first presidency won almost

entirely through the efforts of the mass media. He was credited with popularizing the

catchy slogan "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too" and for advancing "the Log-Cabin

Candidate" in published songs, speeches, letters and assorted Whig propaganda. The Log

Cabin, a Greeley original, became the Whigs' major organ during the 1840 race with a

national circulation that reached 80,000 copies a week.62 The newspaper has been cited as

no less than "the greatest journalistic success America has ever known."63 Weed, who

had originally commissioned the project, credited Greeley with a single-handed,








journalistic coup. "A more pronounced paper for popular circulation was needed," Weed

wrote. In 1840, under the auspices of the New York Whig State Committee, Greeley

started the Log Cabin, which was "zealous, spirited, and became universally popular."64

For six months during the presidential campaign of 1840, Greeley published stories

and editorials that contributed to Harrison's rise to fame. The Log Cabin was first issued

May 2, 1840. A yearly subscription cost buyers $1.50, and 10 copies could be purchased

for $10.65 Its first front-page story, "An Eloquent Record," featured quotes from Harrison

with his portrait in the upper comer. It published letters written by Harrison in the 1820s

and anecdotal reports about the Battle of Tippecanoe. It was Greeley's first effort at

providing readers with a vision of a candidate's personality and political ambitions.66

A promotional blurb "To Our Patrons" laid out the editorial policies of the

newspaper and set forth goals for future publications. Greeley announced humbly his

own role in attempting to publish their hopes for a new nation, aware that the Log Cabin

contained some material, which "though good" was not new. "We hope to improve."

Greeley wrote, "so that all the contents of our sheet shall possess the double attraction of

freshness and worth."67 Subscribers ordered the newspaper until it was almost impossible

to get clerical help fast enough to take care of the mail, and the first issue of 20,000 prints

sold out at a rate greater than even Greeley could anticipate.68

The secret of the Log Cabin was that it was not stupid. It sparkled with literary

style, and every line was readable. What distinguished the newspaper and the

accompanying "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too" campaign from all other presidential

campaigns was a distinguishing feature: The Log Cabin relied not only on what was

printed, but what readers did.69 Greeley's editorial skill earned the respect of his readers,








although he later noted that the endeavor earned no profit.70 His efforts remained the

Whigs' first and best hope for a lasting challenge to the Democratic Party.71

Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too

The National Whig convention had adopted no official platform for the 1840

candidate.72 Harrison had expressed the view that Congress could not abolish or interfere

with slavery in the states except upon the application of the states, nor abolish slavery in

the District of Columbia without the consent of the residents therein. Clay's compromise

tariff bill should be carried out, he added, and the presidential power of appointment

should be used only for the public advantage, not to promote the interests of party.73

Harrison had said little on other issues, and his silence seemed to reinforce the

assertions of the Democrats that he was the senile "General Mum." But on June 6, 1840,

he spoke. Breaking with tradition, he addressed a crowd from the steps of the National

Hotel in Columbus, Ohio. It was the first of 23 speeches he delivered throughout the fall.

Ranging in length from one to three hours, his speeches refuted the charges that he was

incompetent or senile. It was not clear whether he had help in preparing his speeches.

Certainly it would have been available because the Whigs flooded the nation with

surrogate speakers: William Ogden Niles, using the name of the little village where

Harrison won his most significant military victory, published the 95-page Tippicanoe

Text Book [sic] explicitly to provide them with materials for surrogate speeches.74

The "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too" slogan was Greeley's catchy creation that

referred to Harrison's victory and vice-presidential running mate John Tyler. The

alliterative phrase was a small part of the public's fascination with campaign. The

ensuing hero worship heaped on Harrison by the Whig press marked "a landmark in the

carnivalization of American elective politics."75









Before it ran its course, the "Tippecanoe and Tyler, Too" campaign inspired a

harvest of souvenir items seldom if ever surpassed in quantity and variety in nearly two

centuries of U.S. politics. Included in the campaign were examples of virtually every type

of item used politically in the United States before 1840. A partial inventory includes

thread boxes, papier-mache snuff boxes, flasks, cotton chintzes, at least 20 varieties of

silk kerchiefs or bandanas, almost as many different Sandwich cup plates, more than 60

known types of clothing buttons, an equal number of novelty medals and tokens, nearly

200 styles of silk ribbons, and an eclectic array of ceramic mementos that ranged from

exquisite and expensive copper luster pitchers to Ridgway's "Columbian Star"

Staffordshire pottery priced at 7 cents per plate.76

The canvass was best characterized in the words of one of its own chants as the

"great commotion."

What has caused this great commotion motion motion motion,
Our country through,
It is the ball a-rolling on
For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too,
For Tippecanoe and Tyler, too.
And with them we'll beat little Van,
Van, Van, is a used up man.77

Such slogans and songs appeared on nearly every item of Whig campaign literature, and

they were popularized by reproductions in the Log Cabin. Other methods were used to

"agitate the people," including Whig dinners, barbecues, picnics, and processions, with

women as spectators and participants.78

Whig rallies and parades brought out posters, silk ribbon badges, floats, and cloth

banners of every sort.79 At a rally in Rockford, Ill., Oct. 7, 1840, banners bore the slogans

"Belloit Is True for Tippecanoe," "Whigs of Byron For Our Country We Rally," and









"Pacatonic No Tonic for Van Buren."80 Van Buren was lambasted as a "groveling

demagogue" and associated with the "eastern officeholder pimps."8

The commotion instigated by Greeley was later cited by Whig elder statesman John

Quincy Adams as a sign of "a revolution in the habits and manners of the people."82

Under Greeley's direction, Harrison was the first man "sung to the Presidency." The Log

Cabin published and popularized tunes such as "The Hard Cider Quick Step" and the

"Log Cabin or Tippecanoe Waltz."83

The Log Cabin engaged in a number of other modem media practices, including

the use of pre-election projections. A chart of popular votes in "What is the Prospect?"

Oct. 31, 1840, predicted that Harrison would win the Electoral College by a breakdown

of 194 votes to Van Buren's 100.84 Greeley included a disclaimer that his estimates were

"of course no better than any other man's estimate. We may be deceived or mistaken. We

pretend to no secret sources of information. We have only looked on, certainly not

without interest or care, through the contest."85

"The Work is Done!" announced a Monday, Nov. 9, 1840, headline.86 Greeley and

his editors had ascertained "beyond doubt" that the majority necessary for a Harrison and

Tyler administration had been chosen. "Bretheren! Whigs! Are not our efforts and our

toils gloriously rewarded?" 7 Harrison went on to win the election soundly with 52.9

percent of the popular vote and 234 electoral votes. Van Buren received 46.8 percent of

the popular vote and 60 electoral votes.88 According to returns posed in the Log Cabin,

Harrison won 1,093,709 votes and Van Buren 875,374.89

William Henry Harrison Is No More

Accounts of the Harrison victory were joyous, and Whig supporters ignored

warnings and gripes from Democrats that Harrison was too ill to take office. "The sun of









Reform and Liberty has at length risen on our long oppressed and misgoverned country!

The Administration of Martin Van Buren terminated on Wednesday of this week,"

announced the Log Cabin, March 6, 1841. Harrison's inauguration would be celebrated

"amidst an unprecedented concourse of rejoicing, sympathizing Freemen."90

"The Inauguration," published in the Log Cabin, March 13, 1841, described the

morning that heralded the Whigs' greatest hour of victory, which "broke somewhat

cloudily, and the horizon seemed rather to betoken snow or rain."91 Other accounts

provided hints to the fate of the "venerable old man" as he walked through a storm along

Pennsylvania Avenue to the City Hall, "amid double columns of human beings, the bells

ringing merrily, the flakes of snow rapidly mingling with his grey locks, his eye flashing

fire, and his step as firm as of youth or lusty manhood." It was the "hour of triumph."92

The celebration in intemperate weather exacted a final toll on Harrison, as well as

the party that had catapulted him to national prominence. On April 3, 1841, a small

paragraph on page two of the Log Cabin disclosed without fanfare that the president "was

taken suddenly ill on Saturday evening last, and for a time threatened with severe and

protracted if not dangerous indisposition."93 He was diagnosed with pneumonia, but

doctors assured the nation that "the virulence of the disorder had been almost entirely

subdued, and sanguine expectations were entertained of his speedy recovery."94

Within a week, the Log Cabin was reissued with headlines announcing the "Death

of President Harrison!" "We are constrained," wrote Greeley, "to confirm the painful

tidings which have already been borne on the wings of the wind to every portion of our

land. WILLIAM HENRY HARRISON IS NO MORE! [sic]"95








The Whig Party did not recover from the loss of Harrison, but Greeley devoted his

life to attacking Jacksonian Democracy. Meantime, newspapers throughout the country

had carried already a formal account of the Whig Illinois State convention at Springfield

on Oct. 8, 1839, which named delegates to the Harrisburg National Convention. One of

the electors nominated to represent Illinois at Harrisburg was "Abraham Lincoln of

Sangamon." It was the first time, notes Harrison biographer James A. Green, the name of

the nation's first Republican president appeared in mass circulation.96

Notes

'James W. Dearing and Everett M. Rogers, Agenda-Setting (Thousand Oaks, CA:
Sage Publications, Inc., 1996.) The agenda-setting theories popularized in scholarly
literature by James W. Dearing and Everett M. Rogers noted similar strategies by mass
media practitioners in the 20'h century.
2 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988.) Fischer's text contained an impressive inventory of Whig campaign
paraphernalia.

3 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 2.
Greeley's father Zaccheus Greeley married Mary Woodburn in 1807. Horace was bom in
the farm town of Amherst, NH, Feb. 3, 1811, the third of seven children. Greeley
biographer James Parton, who spared neither metaphor nor detail in his description of the
editor's eventful life, wrote that Greeley's birth "was almost too much for him." Using
the language "of one who was present," Parton wrote that Greeley "came into the world
as black as a chimney. There were no signs of life. He uttered no cry; he made no motion;
he did not breathe. But the little discolored stranger had articles to write, and was not
permitted to escape his destiny."

4 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), ix.

5 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 84.

6 John R. Commons, "Horace Greeley and the Working Class Origins of the
Republican Party," Political Science Quarterly, 24 (September 1909), 470.

7 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4th ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 127.










8 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 466, 467.

9 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 466, 467.

1o Francis Brown, Raymond of the Times (New York: Norton, 1951), 5.

"To the Public," The .,ti?, m .,,, Feb. 17, 1838, v.1, no.1.

12 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 466, 467.

13 Francis Brown, Raymond of the Times (New York: Norton, 1951), 5.

14 "To Our Readers," The .i. t- *'.. ,,. Feb. 9, 1839, v.1, no.52.

5 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 1. Weed wrote
in his memoirs that he was bom "in the small place called Acra, in the town of Cairo,
Greene County, New York, Nov. 15, 1797." The Autobiography of Thurlow Weed, edited
by his daughter Harriet A. Weed, and Weed's Memoir, edited by his grandson, Thurlow
Weed Barnes, were written at various periods, and in detached fragments. "These
reminiscences are sufficiently full to make, when arranged in due order of time," Weed
wrote, "a connected narrative of the events and experiences of the years he deemed of
chief interest or importance."

16 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 260.

17 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4' ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 132.

5 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4th ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 131.

19 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), 107.
20 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.
21 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 96, 97.









22 Glyndon G. Van Deusen, Thurlow Weed, Wizard of the Lobby (Boston: Little,
Brown and Co., 1947), 227. Weed's connections with the Anti-Masonic movement made
it inevitable that stories should circulate about his lack of character. He was portrayed
repeatedly as "Fagin the Jew" or "The Lucifer of the Lobby." Some of the tales were only
"vicious and unfounded rumors," according to biographer Glyndon Van Deusen. In this
category belonged allegations that Weed seduced immigrants at Castle Garden out of
$20,000 and that he was a party to a scheme for despoiling Trinity Church of valuable
property under pretext of upgrading Broadway.

23 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 312.

24 Thorton Kirkland Lothrop, William Henry Seward (Boston and New York:
Houghton Mifflin Co., 1896), 1, 2.

25 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 466, 467.

26 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 312.

27 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 311.

28 Ronald P. Formisano, "Differential-Participant Politics: The Early Republic's
Political Culture, 1789-1840," The American Political Science Review, 68 (1974), 479-
483.

29 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), 18.

30 Thorton Kirkland Lothrop, William Henry Seward (Boston and New York:
Houghton Mifflin Co., 1896), 20, 21.

31 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), xiii.
32 James L. Hutson, "The American Revolutionaries, the Political Economy of
Aristocracy, and the American Concept of the Distribution of Wealth, 1765-1900," The
American Historical Review, 98, 4 (October 1993), 1080-1094.

33 James L. Hutson, "The American Revolutionaries, the Political Economy of
Aristocracy, and the American Concept of the Distribution of Wealth, 1765-1900," The
American Historical Review, 98, 4 (October 1993), 1097.
34 Thurlow Weed, Life r .,.' .- Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 450, 451.









35 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 111.
Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a Memoir
(Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 48. According to
Greeley, the first use of the term "Whig" to designate an American political party was by
Courier and Enquirer Editor James Watson Webb of New York.

6 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amrno, 1868). 111.

37 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 113.

38 "Your Obedient Servants, Dave[???] St. Barclay," etc., to Thurlow Weed, Esq.,
Nov. 16, 1838, Thurlow Weed Papers, New York: University of Rochester. "Loco-Foco"
was an enigmatic but pejorative term attached to the Democratic Party by Whig
advocates, according to Weed. Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His
Autobiography and a Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84,
Vol. 2), 52. "This curious word came into general use to designate the Democrats shortly
after the adoption of the word Whig to designate opponents of Jackson. It originally
meant a kind of self-igniting match, but as no other sort of matches are known, in this
sense it soon became obsolete. At a gathering in Tammany Hall, New York, in 1835, the
Varian faction extinguished the lights, fearing that the Curtis men had control of the
meeting, whereupon matches were produced by the Curits side, and business proceeded.
The Whig papers took advantage of this incident to fasten the term 'Locos,' or 'Loco-
Focos,' upon the Democratic party."

39 M. Bradley to Thurlow Weed; Michael F. Holt, "The Election of 1840, Voter
Mobilization, and the Emergence of the Second American Party System: A Reappraisal
of Jacksonian Voting Behavior," A Master's Due: Essays in Honor of David Herbert
Donald, eds. William J. Cooper Jr., Michael F. Holt, and John McCardell (Baton Rouge,
LA: Louisiana State University, 1985), 21.

40 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.

41 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 481.

42 Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Packaging the Presidency: A History and Criticism of
Presidential Campaign Advertising 3rd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996),
8.

43 John Fiske, "Harrison, Tyler, and the Whig Coalition," Essays Historical and
Literary (New York: The MacMillan Co., 1925), 341, 342.

44 M.J. Heale, The Presidential Quest: Candidates and Images in American
Political Culture, 1789-1852 (New York: Longman, 1982.) See also Roger A. Fischer,










Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of American Presidential Campaigns
1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1988), 35.

45 David D. Permutter, "A Prehistory of Media Consulting for Political
Campaigns," The Manship School Guide to Political Communication (Baton Rouge, LA:
Louisiana State University Press, 1999), 13-15.
46 David D. Permutter, "A Prehistory of Media Consulting for Political
Campaigns," The Manship School Guide to Political Communication (Baton Rouge, LA:
Louisiana State University Press, 1999), 14.

47 David D. Permutter, "A Prehistory of Media Consulting for Political
Campaigns," The Manship School Guide to Political Communication (Baton Rouge, LA:
Louisiana State University Press, 1999), 14.

48 Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Packaging the Presidency: A History and Criticism of
Presidential Campaign Advertising 3rd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996),
5. "By 1828 a mass audience of voters existed," according to Jamieson. "They were able
to determine directly who would win the presidency. Not surprisingly, pro-Jackson
editors used calculated efforts to popularize the legend of 'Old Hickory.'"
49 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 139.
As early as 1830, the idea of newspapers with national circulations began to take hold.

50 Elizabeth R. Varon, "Tippecanoe and the Ladies, Too: White Women and the
Party Politics in Antebellum Virginia," The Journal of American History, 82, 2
(September 1995), 504.

51 Elizabeth R. Varon, "Tippecanoe and the Ladies, Too: White Women and the
Party Politics in Antebellum Virginia," The Journal of American History, 82, 2
(September 1995), 504.

52 Bertram Wyatt-Brown, "Prelude to Abolitionism: Sabbatarian Politics and the
Rise of the Second Party System," The Journal of American History, 58, 2 (September
1971), 330.

53 Robert Gray Gunderson, The Log-Cabin Campaign (Lexington, KY: University
of Kentucky Press, 1957), 74, 75; See: Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too;
The Material Culture of American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago:
University of Illinois Press, 1988), 45.

54 M.J. Heale, The Presidential Quest: Candidates and Images in American
Political Culture, 1789-1852 (New York: Longman, 1982), 83-132; Roger A. Fischer,
Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of American Presidential Campaigns
1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1988), 47.









55 Jackson to Van Buren, July 13, 1840; The Log-Cabin Campaign (Lexington,
KY: University of Kentucky Press, 1957.) See also: Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and
Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984
(Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 1988), 109.

56 "The Log Cabin Candidate," The Log Cabin, May 2, 1840; Thurlow Weed, Life
of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a Memoir (Boston, New York:
Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 80. Weed attributed the origin of the sneer
to a different newspaper, The Richmond Enquirer, edited by Thomas Richie. "The taunt
in a Virginia newspaper that General Harrison would be contented in a log-cabin, with
plenty of hard citer was a god-send to the Whigs of 1840."

57 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 37.

58 Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Packaging the Presidency: A History and Criticism of
Presidential Campaign Advertising 3rd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996),
11.

59 Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Packaging the Presidency: A History and Criticism of
Presidential Campaign Advertising 3rd ed. (New York: Oxford University Press, 1996),
9.
60 Allan Nevins, The Diary of Philip Hone: 1828-1851 (New York: Dodd, Mead,
1927, 1969, Vol. 1), 472.
61 Allan Nevins, The Diary of Philip Hone: 1828-1851 (New York: Dodd, Mead,
1927, 1969, Vol. 1), 486.

62 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), 106.

63 James A. Green, William Henry Harrison, His Life and Times (Richmond, VA:
Garrett and Massie, Inc., 1941), 352.
64 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.
65 Log Cabin, April 3, 1841. Vol. 1. New Series, New-York, Saturday, No. 18,
$1.50 per annum; 10 copies for $10.

66 "An Eloquent Record," Log Cabin, May 2, 1840.

67 "To Our Patrons," Log Cabin, May 2, 1840.









68 James A. Green, William Henry Harrison, His Life and Times (Richmond, VA:
Garrett and Massie, Inc., 1941), 352.

69 James A. Green, William Henry Harrison, His Life and Times (Richmond, VA:
Garrett and Massie, Inc., 1941), 352.

70 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amrno, 1868), 134.
71 Henry Luther Stoddard, Horace Greeley, Printer, Editor, Crusader (New York:
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 1946), 171, 172.
72 Freeman Cleaves, Old Tippecanoe; William Henry Harrison and His Time
(New York, London: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1939), 319.

73 Harrison to J.M. Berrien, Nov. 4, 1836; Freeman Cleaves, Old Tippecanoe;
William Henry Harrison and His Time (New York, London: Charles Scribner's Sons,
1939), 320.

74 David D. Permutter, "A Prehistory of Media Consulting for Political
Campaigns," The Manship School Guide to Political Communication (Baton Rouge, LA:
Louisiana State University Press, 1999), 15.

75 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 29.
76 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture oJ
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 29.

77 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 29; See also: Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed! I, hi'l His
Autobiography and a Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84,
Vol. 1), 490. Weed cited the lyrics to the most well known songs of the Whig rallies.
78 Staunton Spectator, Oct. 20, 1836, Sept. 10, 1840, features Whig activities in
Virginia during the elections of 1836 and 1840. Edward L. Ayers, "The Valley of the
Shadow: Living the Civil War in Pennsylvania and Virginia," [online]. Charlottesville,
VA: University of Virginia, accessed: Feb. 5, 2003: available at:
.-p ii-. r-.. ill i-e r.'I, -. Ju/vshadow/vshadow.html.

79 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 31.










80 North Western Gazette and Galena Advertiser, Oct. 16, 1840; Edward L.
Ayers, "The Valley of the Shadow: Living the Civil War in Pennsylvania and Virginia,"
[online]. Charlottesville, VA: University of Virginia, accessed: Feb. 5, 2003; available at:
ilp yIt.c-.'i ,II i.rij cJdu/vshadow/vshadow.html.

81 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 29.

82 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 29.

83 Roger A. Fischer, Tippecanoe and Trinkets Too; The Material Culture of
American Presidential Campaigns 1828-1984 (Urbana, Chicago: University of Illinois
Press, 1988), 30.
84 "What is the Prospect?" Log Cabin, Oct. 31, 1840.

"5 "What is the Prospect?" Log Cabin, Oct. 31, 1840.

86 "What is the Prospect?" Log Cabin, Oct. 31, 1840. "The Work is Done!" Log
Cabin, Nov. 9, 1840, projected Harrison had won. "We have already ascertained beyond
doubt that Harrison and Tyler Electors have been chosen in the following States: Halt!
Let us add up ... GEN. HARRSISON IS ELECTED, without the votes of Georgia and
Michigan, which are now pouring in upon us in his favor .. Brethren! Whigs! Are not
our efforts and our toils gloriously rewarded?" [Popular votes posted Dec. 5: Harrison
1,093,709; Van Buren 875,374 vs. 1836: 610,214 to 643,247 respectively.]

87 "The Work is Done!" Log Cabin, Nov. 9, 1840.

88 Michael F. Holt, The Rise and Fall of the American Whig Party: Jacksonian
Politics and the Onset of the Civil War (New York, Oxford: Oxford University Press,
1999), 825.

89 Log Cabin, Dec. 5, 1840. The final tally of votes was: (Whig) William H.
Harrison: 234 electoral votes, 52.9 percent popular votes; (Democrat) Martin Van Buren:
60 electoral votes, 46.8 percent popular votes; (Whig) John Tyler: 0 electoral votes, (??)
popular votes: (Unknown) James G. Bimey: 0 electoral votes, 0.3 percent popular votes:
(Whig) Hugh L. White: no data.

90 "March 4'", 1841," Log Cabin, March 6, 1841. "The sun of Reform and Liberty
has at length risen on our long oppressed and misgoverned country! The Administration
of Martin Van Buren terminated on Wednesday of this week, and on Thursday the 4th










inst. William Henry Harrison was inaugurated President of the United States, amidst an
unprecedented concourse of rejoicing, sympathizing Freemen."

91 "The Inauguration," Log Cabin, March 13, 1841. A small paragraph on page
two, fourth column, toward bottom: "President Harrison was taken suddenly ill on
Saturday evening last, and for a time threatened with severe and protracted if not
dangerous indisposition. (His disease is entitled by the doctors Pneumonia.)"
92 "Gen. Harrison at Washington, Correspondence of the N.Y. Express: Arrival of
General Harrison," Log Cabin, Feb. 13, 1841. "Twelve years ago coming March, the
first, the very first, among all the numerous victims of a flagrant and persevering system
of proscription, Gen. William Henry Harrison was struck from the roll of Ministers
Plenipotentiary abroad, by Gen. Jackson, and Thomas P. Moore, of Kentucky, was
substituted in his stead. This first victim of a system which has been prolonged for twelve
years, sacrificing almost every man of apposing opinions to such an extent that few or
none of them now enjoy the honors or emoluments of a common Government, enters the
Capitol of his country today, by the voice of 19 out of 26 States of the Union, and amid
the acclimations of thousands of freemen. The air rings with their cheers."

93 Log Cabin, April 3, 1841.

94 Log Cabin, April 3, 1841.

95 "New-York, Saturday, April 3, 1841: Death of President Harrison!" Log Cabin,
April 10, 1841.

96 James A. Green, William Henry Harrison, His Life and Times (Richmond, VA:
Garrett and Massie. Inc., 1941), 329.














CHAPTER 3
NEW YORK'S PENNY PRESS AND THE 1844 CAMPAIGN: FREE-SOIL MAKES
MUD OF CLAY

Henry Clay initiated his campaign "confidently" with an acceptance speech after

his May 4, 1844, nomination. He said he believed the call was in conformity with his

"high sense of duty, and with feelings of profound gratitude.", The convention had

resolved its adherence to the principles of the Whig Party, "known of all men, and

cherished by a large majority of the American People," by setting a number of key issues

on its platform. It called for a protective tariff, which would provide sufficient revenue to

pay federal debts and defray governmental expenditures. The platform also called for a

national currency, which would be uniform in value in all branches of the country. Whigs

demanded finally "a fair and equal distribution of the proceeds from public lands," a

revolutionary experiment in the allocation of the spoils from Westward settlement.2

Greeley counted himself among the leading exponents of the 1844 platform. A

column titled "Henry Clay" daily featured Whig doctrine in the Tribune's news section.

From Clay's nomination until the election, it featured anecdotes of the candidate's

character, Whig ideals, and strategies intended to ensure a victory in November. The

column included woodcut prints of American flags and various subtitle fonts that

decorated transcripts of Clay's speeches and daily news events. The column reflected

Greeley's life-long respect for the Whig's elder spokesman, and it made appearances in

the Tribune until Clay's death.3








Pre-election projections had determined, in the minds of Greeley and Tribune

editors, that Clay's victory was assured. But in the months and days preceding the

election, the Whigs' confidence in a victory slipped when it became apparent that Clay's

ambivalence on the slavery issue had alienated anti-slavery voters in the Northeast.

Editorials continued to assure readers that Clay's triumph was certain regardless, and the

true purpose of the campaign, according to the Tribune, was to send a message to

Democrats that the Whigs had arrived. But members of the Liberty Party, which was

headed by the uncompromising abolitionist James Birney, challenged the Whigs'

presumptions. Birney supporters smashed Whig hopes by securing enough votes to cost

Clay New York and the election. Greeley was devastated, but his newspaper survived.

Selling Papers Like Hotcakes

Greeley's bold editorials brought notoriety to Clay and the Tribune, but he could

not take full credit for the success of his newspaper. Lesser-known influences,

nonetheless important, contributed to the rise of the penny press. Horatio David

Sheppard, a character featured in Parton's biography of Greeley, was among the chief

exponents of the marketing scheme, which he first advanced in the early 1830s. It was a

simple idea based on daily observations. Sheppard noticed that a small boy in the streets

of New York would sell half a dozen penny cakes in the course of a minute. The

difference between a cent and no money did not seem to be appreciated by customers.

Sheppard reasoned that if a person saw something and wanted it, knowing the price to be

only one cent, he was almost as certain to buy it as though it were offered him for

nothing. Editors could make a fortune, he concluded, if they produced "tempting"

articles, which could be sold profitably for a cent in "spicy" daily papers.4









The timing of Sheppard's efforts concurred with Greeley's work as Weed's

commissioned editor. Along with the Log Cabin, Greeley had enjoyed literary acclaim as

editor of the Jeffersonian, a Whig newspaper. His efforts at the Jeffersonian, Weed

wrote, had earned him "the friendship and confidence of the strong men of his party."5

Greeley's calls for social reforms at first aroused no notice: His entrepreneurial

luck paralleled Sheppard's, who "could not convince one man of the T- jil. of his

scheme not one!"' But he persevered and laid plans to engineer The New York Tribune,

one of the nation's first mass-circulated dailies and one of the few newspapers that cost

one penny per issue. Shortly before Harrison's abrupt death, Greeley announced that he

would begin publishing his newspaper, and on April 10, 1841, the Tribune appeared at

that giveaway price. According to Weed, Greeley's reputation as "the best-informed and

most efficient tariff man in the country" made it possible for the journal to survive years

of low profit and remain influential.7

Greeley's account of the newspaper's first edition suggests the Tribune did not

enjoy the same rousing debut as the Log Cabin. The president Greeley had labored to

elect died one week prior, and the event I ,.n',d.J hr,a I. over him. Even the skies of New

York acknowledged the loss. On April 10, 1841, "a day of most unseasonable chill and

sleet and snow," Greeley wrote, "our city held her great funeral parade and pageant in

honor of our lost President, who had died six days before." The Tribune was released,

nonetheless, "On that leaden, funereal morning, the most inhospitable of the year."8

Greeley used $1,000 of borrowed money, about $1,000 of his own money, and a

mortgage on his shop, a total capitalization of less than $3,000, to issue the first copies of

the newspaper.9 The Tribune office was located at No. 30 Ann St., New York City. It








hosted a collection of young, enterprising writers. Henry Jarvis Raymond, future editor of

the New York Times, assisted Greeley in the department of literary criticism, fine arts,

and general intelligence from the newspaper's earliest days.10 Other prot6egs also raised

the standards of the Fourth Estate. Charles A. Dana served as Greeley's loyal assistant.

The remaining staff, which was displayed prominently on the Tribune directory, included

associate-editors James S. Pike, William H. Fry, George Ripley, George M. Snow,

Bayard Taylor, F.J. Ottarson, William Newman, B. Brockway, Solon Robinson, and

Donald C. Henderson."

The Tribune was based on the premise that writers would meet the desire of

American readers to have news of every important occurrence. "My leading idea,"

Greeley wrote, "was the establishment of a journal removed alike from servile

partisanship on the one hand and from gagged, mincing neutrality on the other."12

Lawyers, merchants, bankers, economists, authors, and politicians would find in the

paper whatever they needed to see, "and be spared the trouble of looking elsewhere."13

Greeley's idealistic vision for the Tribune might not have survived without the

assistance of Thomas McElrath, who invested $2,000 in the newspaper during an early

financial crisis.14 According to Greeley, McElrath made him "a voluntary and wholly

unexpected" business deal for the "struggling but hopeful enterprise."'15 His presence at

the Tribune was much less outspoken than Greeley's, and the editor was grateful for the

McElrath's unusual tolerance of the new breed of journalism. During the 10 years that the

Tribune was issued by Greeley and McElrath, the latter "never once" indicated that the

radical opinions it expressed on abolitionism, the death penalty, socialism, "and other

frequent aberrations from the straight and narrow path of Whig partisanship" were









injurious to the interests of the publishers. The only time McElrath expressed

dissatisfaction with Greeley's work was when the latter dipped into the newspaper's

treasury to help a friend who was, in the senior partner's opinion, beyond help.16

The opening year for the Tribune was marked by success in circulation and sales,

but it was beleaguered with difficulties in sustaining profits. In an attempt to boost

business, Greeley announced the issue of the first number of The New York Weekly

Tribune, a much larger and, he claimed, fresher, more comprehensive, intelligent, and

"better paper" than the Tribune's predecessor, the New-Yorker. The new political journal

was "openly, decidedly, ardently Whig in its opinions and inculcations, but candid,

temperate in all things, and careful to be accurate and just in all its statements."'7

The Weekly Tribune first appeared Sept. 2, 1841, and it was one of Greeley's great

successes. Offered at $2 a year or $1 a year when "clubs" of 20 members bought it, the

Weekly Tribune established Greeley's reputation as the greatest editor of his day.18 In the

Midwest, settlers, farmers, and homesteaders were said to have read it "next to the

Bible." In lieu of the Weekly Tribune's editorial quality, the price of the Daily Tribune

was raised to 2 cents per issue. Weekly subscribers paid 1.5 cents per issue, and revenues

from Greeley's enterprises increased."

What Hath God Wrought?

On May 25, 1844, Samuel F.B. Morse sat at a table in the old Supreme Court

chamber in Washington, D.C., and tapped out a message in code on a new device that

transmitted news instantly. His assistant in Baltimore decoded the clicks that spelled out

the message, "What hath God wrought?"20 Morse's telegraph ushered into history the

information revolution, which relied on the creation of instant news for primarily









commercial purposes. The revolution commenced when the telegraph merged with the

New York's penny newspapers to create a full-fledged circulation war.

Greeley's reaction to the introduction of telegraphic transmissions was at first

mixed. He bewailed the fact that in one year alone, the Tribune paid more than $100,000

annually for intellectual labor and reporting based in the New York office alone, plus an

additional $100,000 in fees for telegraphic correspondence from around the country. Like

most editors at the time, he applauded availability of access to instant news; however, the

telegraph entailed a drawback that penny press editors were slow to overcome. "The

electronic Telegraph," Greeley wrote, "precluded the multiplication of journals in the

great cities, by enormously increasing the cost of publishing each of them."21

Nonetheless, the intersection of the penny press and the second party system

produced a unique breed of editors. Greeley led them. The new editors, unlike the close-

knit web of political apologists in the first party system, competed for independent ideas

that were associated with a mass readership ready and willing to pay for views that

subscribed to their own. The editors of the second party system were "a useful, a

laborious, a generous, an honorable class of men and women, and their writings have

their due effect," Greeley wrote. "But, that part of the newspaper which interests,

awakens, moves, warns, inspires, instructs and educates all classes and conditions of

people, the wise and the unwise, the illiterate and the learned, is the N .'

The evolution of the commercial press was accelerated by the invention of newer,

more efficient and faster print technology, too. The steam press replaced horse-powered

presses and produced about 500 pages per hour, twice the previous amount. The advances








coincided with one of the Whigs' core beliefs economic growth and progress through

active, innovative efforts led by politicians and engaged citizenry.23

Greeley took pride in individual accomplishment, and the Tribune served as the

natural mouthpiece for the Whig's vision of human progress.24 At the same time, his

opinion of editors put him at odds with his peers. He suggested that editors were not "in

all cases, or in most, the wisest of men," and editorial writing did not have "a greater

value than hasty composition in general."25

In less literary attempts to beat the competition, penny press editors commonly

engaged in mudslinging allegations of ethical or legal misdeeds against each other. The

accusations were often rooted in attempts to besmirch the reputation of a newspaper that

had secured an advantage in the market. The rivalry between The New York Tribune and

The New York Herald was among the most intense.26

The Tribune trailed the Herald in daily sales but remained competitive with the

success and reputation of the Weekly Tribune. Throughout the 1840s and '50s, the

newspapers jockeyed for an advantage in total circulation, and the leader was often

determined by the relative success of each editor in discrediting his competitor.27

Editor William Bennett had early tried to recruit Greeley for a position at the

Herald, but the up-and-coming editor declined the offer. Bennett resented Greeley's

slight and publicly brandished him "the most unmitigated blockhead concerned with the

newspaper press."28 Unlike the Tribune, the Herald was not an organ of any party; rather

it was created for the sole purposes of Bennett's business ambitions.29 The Herald spoke

only for Bennett, whose concern for social health of the nation came after his economic









interests. His character offended readers and fellow businessmen, but the curmudgeon

made possible a more modem understanding of free speech and expression.30

Bennett successfully turned the Herald into an attractive and useful product for

which there was a widespread demand. The New York elite resented his overnight

success, and his personality did little to impress them.31 Bennett was horsewhipped seven

times in the public streets, Greeley wrote, not including the "sundry kicking [sic] out of

hotels" or ihe u h.rr- ceremony of a company leaving the table when he ventured to sit

down among them." In turn, Greeley slammed the Herald editor for attacking "the timid,

the gentle, the generous, and the forgiving." According to Greeley, Bennett lived on

"defamation, slander, obloquy, beastliness," and "lies." "Of course such conduct could

not go unscourged [sic] even in New York. If he had lived further South, he would have

been simply beaten to death or shot. Here he was simply horsewhipped."32

Greeley remained cynical about the rancor in the press over the Tribune's agenda.

He attributed reactions like Bennett's to jealousy of the Log Cabin's success. "Two thirds

of the country press," he wrote, was "a nuisance and a positive curse." The jealousy about

the Log Cabin was not so much induced by its circulation as its character. Other

newspapers, he alleged, were filled with "medleys of murder, rape, and rascality, all

much lower than the 'Cabin' at its lowest price ($1 by the quantity)." Newspapers across

the nation had degenerated into demagogic mouthpieces, "ravenous for spoils," Greeley

feared. "Every one of these not only does us no good politically, but is morally unsound,

and tends to unfit its readers for earnest consideration of public affairs."33 His solution

was to publish constructive solutions to society's ailments instead of exploiting them.








His pnvate letters indicate his desire to advance Whig principles. He wrote Weed,

Jan. 27, 1841, convinced that his "honor and character what there are of them are

pledged to this thing: that the Whigs will act in power as they have talked out of power;

that they will honestly reform abuses, abolish useless offices, retrench exorbitant salaries,

and show by their whole conduct that they are not Tories."34

Boss Weed

The Whigs recovered slowly from the death of Harrison. Greeley was among the

loyal to rally forces before Democratic challenges erased Whig gains. He wrote Weed,

Sept. 15, 1841, "distressed" at the contents of the Journal. "Every number seems to

proclaim that we are lost. I pray you give us a good, rousing leader, calling on the Whigs

of doubtful counties to rally desperately for the saving of the State." Weed took note of

Greeley's continued faith in the Whigs, and in turn, he watched "as with a parent's

solicitude the development of the young editor whose capacity for usefulness he had been

first to appreciate." Weed noted privately that Greeley's industriousness in editing the

Tribune was as "marvelous" as it had been editing the Log Cabin, but the zealous

advocate of reform "lacked judgment."35

Greeley often ignored Weed's attempts to smooth the tone of the Tribune. Their

different personalities led to a split in the relationship. Among Greeley's follies, Weed

alleged, were various "isms" by which he was "from time to time misled." Greeley

acknowledged that his mentor possessed superior experience and wisdom to which he

would sometimes defer, but he more often refused to be controlled by Weed.36

A breakdown in the relationship was evident before the 1844 election. On Sept. 10,

1842, Greeley wrote Weed with language that revealed his obsession for holding office.

"You have pleased on several occasions to take me to task for differing from you," he








wrote, "as though such conditions were an evidence, not merely of weakness on my part,

but of some black ingratitude, or heartless treachery." Greeley claimed that he "never

desired offices of distinction, avenues to fortune," at Weed's expense. He stopped short

of blaming Weed for his lack of appointed office by suggesting that his services not

Weed's were sought at their first interview. "I have ever been ready to give you any

service within my power; but my understanding, my judgment, my consciousness of

convictions, of duty and public good, these I can surrender to no man," Greeley wrote.

"You wrong yourself in asking them, and in taking me to task, like a school-boy, for

expressing my sentiments respectfully when they differ from yours." Greeley concluded

his letter with an apparent resignation, the first of several breaks from the Whigs.

"Henceforth, I pray you," he wrote, "differ from me when you see occasion, favor me in

nothing, treat me as you do others."37

Democrats in Whig Clothing

Greeley's attempt to rally the Whigs after President Harrison's death would have

enjoyed greater success had successor John Tyler understood the office, in accordance

with Whig principles, as "a trust to be administered in conformity with the policy of his

predecessor."38 At first, Tyler had no apparent intention of abandoning the Whigs, who

had accepted him reluctantly as an "accidental" president. When it became clear that he

stood little chance of reelection, he abandoned them.39

The Whigs soon discovered what a costly mistake they made when they first

nominated Tyler, an avowed Democrat, for the vice presidency. The initial strategy of

balancing the Whig ticket to appeal to Southern voters had worked; however, Tyler had

no qualms about returning to his previous "factional affiliations." He refused to take








action on behalf of Whig interests, "narrow and timid in certain ways," according to

Weed, which embodied a great share of "the lIhLr.1i, and enlightenment of the nation."'40

Within six months of assuming office, Tyler vetoed a Whig bill to restore the

United States Bank smashed by Jackson. With the exception of Secretary of State

Webster, his cabinet resigned in disgust. Henry Clay, next to Webster the leading Whig

of the country, resigned his seat in the Senate, sensing the futility of the Whigs' marginal

gains from the previous election.4'

Tyler's intensions became even clearer when he reappointed cabinet members to

fill the vacancies. "How the President will act with regard to appointments and general

political relations, I cannot say," Greeley wrote, "but it seems to me the evident dictate of

good policy that he should meet ... his friends."42 Greeley printed editorials in support of

Tyler, holding out hope that the party could be salvaged, which might entail his own

appointment to office.43 Years later, Greeley was criticized for failing to recognize

Tyler's antagonisms because Tribune articles in 1841 alienated the interests of free-

laborers in the North, among his largest groups of constituents. In his defense, Greeley

claimed he connected himself with Tyler only because he had been assured that the

administration was "heartily and faithfully" Whig."

Greeley was tormented by a bitter reality that an editor in the 19th century would

have been precluded by convention from holding office. The title he coveted most was

Post-Master General. He alluded to the ambition in a letter to Whig fellow Caleb Cushing

written Dec. 17, 1841. "I have ever been hostile to indiscriminately universal

proscription, but I hold with Mr. Jefferson in 1801 that simple justice [sic] demands the

confiding of at least half the valuable offices to that party which for twelve years has








been denied any." In New York. six of the nine major cities had "Loco-Foco

Postmasters," and Tyler had appointed only one of them.45

When it became clear that Tyler had abandoned the Whigs, a handful of party

loyalists, including Weed and later Greeley, used the press as their last weapons in a fight

for survival. Greeley opened the Tribune to the voices of disenfranchised voters. "Every

hard reflection on the course of the Whigs, coming from the atmosphere of the

Presidents' House, initiates the mass of our readers," Greeley wrote. "They feel with

Shylock, 'If it will feed nothing itself, it will feed my revenge.'" 46

One year into the Tyler administration, the Tribune began rallying against the

Democratic Party as the embodiment of corruption. According to a Tribune editorial,

Aug. 23, 1842, the abuse of official patronage under Van Buren reached "its lowest

depth, and we believe no man on earth could have found a 'lower deep' save the man

who is now scouring the very gutters of our city for the willing instruments of his corrupt

designs." Tyler's "desperate and contemptible knavery," sought to fasten upon the people

"the curse of his rule." Tyler would find "ere long that instead of postponing, he only

adds fiercer fury to the indignation they will poar [sic] upon his head."47 The Democratic

Party was allegedly composed of "nine-tenths" of the convicted felons, outlaws, fugitives

from justice, "and others who have no right to vote in our city, and can never legally

acquire any," who were attached by an instinctive sympathy to "the Loco-Foco party."48

Weed contributed to the dissent and attacked the administration "savagely."49 His

editorials in the Journal called upon readers in the North to rise up and claim a free land,

which was rightfully theirs. "The political, numerical, intellectual, moral, and physical

power and strength of the country resides north of 'Mason and Dixon's line,'" he wrote,








"but our 'dough-faces' have frittered it all away." The newspapers and conventions of

abolitionists had begun to clamor for a moratorium on the admission of Texas, "but for

the influence and action of these same Abolition newspapers and conventions," Weed

wrote, "there would have been neither danger nor possibility of this extension of the

territory and augmentation of the power of slavery."50

"I am reading your editorials every day, sometimes deploring the cruelty of your

trusted blade," a friend wrote Weed, "sometimes aroused by the boldness of your sallies,

continually delighted by your dexterity in the fence, and always admiring the profuse

intermingling of general sentiments and happy conceits. It seems like a perpetual feast,

and indulgence only sharpens the appetite."51

The 1844 Canvass: Two Things to Fear

Clay accepted the role as frontrunner for the Whig presidential nomination,

recognizing early that mass disaffection with the incumbent president could lead to a

Whig triumph. As early as 1842, the Whigs began strategizing the recapture of the

executive office. Their calculations, although accurate in the previous contest, showed the

first signs of falter with overestimates of the importance of Ohio. "They are very

confident of success in Ohio in general, and I think with much ground for hope," Clay

wrote Weed, Sept. 12, 1842. "Should the Whigs achieve a triumph there, and your

anticipations are realized in New York, the victory of 1844 will eclipse that of '40."52

Ohio was home to some of the nation's most outspoken abolitionists, among them

Joshua R. Giddings, who in 1842 was censured in the House of Representatives for

offering anti-slavery resolutions. He resigned his seat to throw the case back upon his

home district and was subsequently reelected as a leading Whig. Giddings constituents

rivaled those of the New York Whigs for setting party policy. In an attempt to temper the








radical sentiments of abolitionists, Weed turned to New York's Millard Fillmore to

represent the party publicly.

Weed had discovered Fillmore 20 years earlier in "an obscure New York town" and

brought him into public life. He suggested Fillmore's nomination for the assembly in

1829 and for governor in 1844. The two grew to be close allies, although Fillmore later

embarrassed and betrayed Weed by supporting the Know-Nothing platform in the 1850s.

But during the elections of the 1840s, Fillmore was "as much at home in Mr. Weed's

house as Mr. Seward or Mr. Greeley."53

Weed's success in engineering Seward's 1838 campaign had become famous

nationally, but in January 1842, Fillmore wrote Weed, "We are in a bad fix. I fear the

[Whig] party must break up from its very foundations. There is no cohesive principle, -

no common head."54 Weed turned to him to repair damage done to the party. "So I am 'in

for it,' am I?" Fillmore wrote Weed, on learning of his nomination to governor. "We have

but two things to fear. First, the Abolition vote; second, that of our friends."55

With the momentum of gains in Ohio and New York, Weed, at least, grew

optimistic of success in the presidential election. "Things certainly look blue for Van

(who is a little, old, red-faced, fat man) and unless the party rallies after he is nominated,

I don't see how he is to get through. We could carry New York if the Tariff question

would be made to take the Abolitionist starch out of five or six thousand Farmers," he

wrote. "Maybe we can any how, for the West looks good and grand."56

Throughout the initial stages of the Clay campaign, Weed extolled Whig virtues to

friend Francis Granger, who withheld support of the party because of its abolitionist

tendencies. Weed realized the importance of Granger's agriculturally based supporters,









appealing to them help build his Northeastern coalition. "If Connecticut sands by us as

she promises and the Senate stands firmly by the Tariff, as it is, [sic] we have a good

look for the White House," Weed boasted to Granger, March 15, 1844. "The 'Wise Men

of Gotham,' you see, have anticipated the duties of conventions, national and State."57

At the same time, Weed acknowledged the Whig's vulnerabilities on the slavery

issue, for which Clay offered only ambiguous solutions. "We go into the fight tomorrow

with good prospects. If we don't do very well, I shall be disappointed," he wrote. "Mr.

Clay would be far safer at home, but as that cannot be, we must take what comes."58

The Whig national convention met at Baltimore, May 1, 1844, and nominated

Henry Clay for president, his third and final attempt at the presidency. The Whigs

nominated Theodore Frelinghuysen of New Jersey for vice president. The central issue of

the campaign turned on the admission of Texas to the Union.59 Democrats were publicly

committed to allowing the state to enter with slavery, and it was evident that they would

receive the pro-slavery and Southern vote. The presidential canvass that ensued,

according to Greeley, became "not only the most arduous but the most equal of any that

the country had ever known, with the possible exception of that of 1800."60

The Democrats had planned to reward James K. Polk for his devoted service to the

party by nominating him for the vice-presidency in 1844, but a bitter dispute arose. When

the Van Buren and John C. Calhoun factions could not reach agreement, the national

Democratic convention selected Polk as a compromise candidate for the presidency. On

May 27, 1844, Silas Wright was nominated for the vice-presidency, but he declined.

George M. Dallas of Pennsylvania was substituted as Polk's running mate.61








When pressed on the admission of Texas, Clay promised only that he would not

jeopardize the interests of the nation over regional disputes. He wrote Weed from

Washington, D.C., May 6, 1844, sure that his opinion "on the Texas question" would not

cost the Whigs the South.62 But late into the campaign, Clay blundered on the issue. On

Aug. 16, 1844, The North Alabamian published a letter from him that would come to be

known as "The Alabama Letter." The document revealed Clay's intentions as a president

- at least those he confided to two Alabama friends about the question of Annexation.

"I do not think it right to announce in advance what will be the course of a future

Administration with respect to a question with a foreign power," he wrote. "I have,

however, no hesitation in saying that, far from having and personal objection to the

Annexation of Texas, I should be glad to see it without dishonor, without war, with the

common consent of the Union, and upon just and fair terms. I do not think that the

subject of Slavery ought to affect the question, one way or the other."63

While the Alabamians in receipt of the letter may have welcomed the news as a

sign of the Whigs continued efforts to create compromise, the reaction to the publication

of the letter among Clay's Whig allies in the North was nearly a universal disdain. "There

is no history so unerring as a bundle of old letters," Weed wrote. "How this great man

was self-deceived."64 The Alabama Letter, unlike any other amount of scrutiny, brought

readers an account of Henry Clay that none of the Whigs had anticipated. "Things look

blue!" Weed wrote Granger, Sept. 3, 1844. "Ugly letter that to Alabama."65

Weed feared that the dismay among Whigs in the North, who increasingly turned to

abolitionism to distinguish themselves from the Democrats, would open the door for

dissenting voices. Liberty Party Candidate James G. Birney rose in the public registry









because Clay would at first not take a stand on Texas; second, when he did, he appeared

to provide no answer at all, alienating both Northern Whigs and Southern Democrats.

The Whigs held out hope for Clay's success.66

Projections and Results: From Clay to Mud

In mid-October, the Tribune reached strategically to Whigs outside New York to

dare "to be Freemen" and overwhelm the Democratic Party. Allegations of corruption

surfaced before the first ballots were cast, indicating the Whigs had grown increasingly

defensive of early leads. "Be sure that every Whig vote in your Town is polled for

Electors of President [sic,]" Greeley warned. It would not be enough for electors to

"barely elect Mr. Clay." Whigs had to show a decided preponderance in the popular vote.

and to do this "every Whig vote must come out." A vote in Alabama counted just as

much toward the aggregate as one in New York, according to the Tribune.

The same week the warnings were issued, the Evening News announced Polk

would win the election. The Tribune responded to the Evening News' "imposing"

headline with "The Question Settled." "If the people are to have the President made for

them before they have had a chance to vote on the question, they would like at least to

have a look at the machinery."68 The Tribune attempted to reassure readers that Clay

would prevail, but early predictions of a Whig landslide were revised with each

subsequent, daily column.

The Evening News had posted the predicted electoral vote tallies based on pre-

election projections. The Tribune reproduced the Evening News' table, italicizing

Virginia, Georgia, Mississippi and Michigan as states in dispute.









"States absolutely for Polk"

Maine 9 Alabama 9
New Hampshire 6 Illinois 9
Virginia 17 Missouri 7
South Carolina 9 Michigan 5
Georgia 11 Arkansas 3
Mississippi 6 Total 91

Charts were also revised to make it appear as if Clay still possessed at least a

psychological advantage across the country, although the Whigs' case was drawing thin

with abolitionists.

According to the Tribune, the four states placed in italics were likely to give as

many votes for Clay as for Polk. The column noted Georgia had 10 electors, not of 11,

and the News did not include states that were leaning toward Clay: New York with 36

electors, Louisiana 6, Pennsylvania 26, and Indiana 12, a total of 70 additional electoral

votes for the Whigs. The writers at the Tribune "assuredly" believed that these states,

"except Pennsylvania" were Whig, but they also acknowledged in print the severity of the

situation. "Polk must carry New-York [sic] or he cannot be elected."69

Allegations of Democratic skullduggery grew at the same rate Whigs perceived

losses in their momentum. Greeley looked for marginal gains in predominantly Southern

states instead of boasting large leads in states throughout the Northeast and Midwest. The

Tribune printed an increasing number of anecdotes about pre-election fraud that hinted at

a number of unfavorable possible outcomes in the state. By Nov. 1, 1844, the legality of

the ballots for electors printed at Albany was suspect. "The undoubtedly correct tickets

have the word 'Electors' printed on the back [sic] of the names, and the words 'For

Electors of President and Vice President' immediately over the names. They make no









designation of 'State' and 'District' Electors," the Tribune alleged. "The friends of Clay

and Frelinghuysen in every County will be careful to use the unquestionable ballots."70

As the votes were counted, the Whigs realized how important New York had

become. The day after the election, when the results were still unclear, Greeley wrote

hopefully, "Never was there a more gallant struggle than that made by the Whigs of our

City yesterday, and throughout the whole campaign. They have fought against the most

corrupt dispensation of Custom House and other Government Patronage against the arts

and appliances of an active, powerful, and unscrupulous body of opponents who would

have shown the Jacobins of the Reign of Terror their masters." The same column

provided hints that the Whigs' gallant struggle might not carry the day. "We are

overwhelmed in the City, by causes which cannot operate elsewhere by enormous

Illegal Voting, and by the general array of our immense Naturalized vote against us,

owing to the prevalence here of Native Americanism."7

But in the days following the election, it became clear that something had gone

critically wrong in the Whig's efforts. On Nov. 8, 1844, the Tribune posted the first in a

series of moribund columns explaining the Whigs' demise. "The State. By The Night

Boat," described the arrival of doom. "The Boat from Albany this morning brings most

disastrous though not unexpected majorities We cannot doubt that Polk's majority is

5,000 ... The deed is done!"72

In hindsight, the Whigs blamed Bimey's Liberty Party for the loss of New York's

electoral votes. Bimey had transformed Clay's letters "into an element of decisive

influence" and cost the Whigs the election.73 Polk would not have won the election, the

Whigs insisted, if the Liberty Party had not split the abolitionist vote in New York.74









"The contest was fairly fought and won when Mr. Clay's famous letter made its

appearance," Greeley wrote. "I think we should have had at least half of that Bimey vote

for Clay, and made him President (for he only needed the vote of New York), in spite of

all other drawbacks, but for all those fatal Alabama letters."75

On Nov. 9, 1844, the Tribune conceded reluctantly that there was "barely a chance"

that Clay might still win. "We have not a hope left. How can we have?" Greeley wrote.

"On all the main issues involved in the late tremendous contest, the People are with us;

but a very small majority have been induced to vote for Polk or Birney."76 In subsequent

issues of the Tribune, Greeley defended the Whigs' pre-election strategies. He had

predicted, after all, that Clay would carry New York by 20,000 votes.77 No one had

foreseen the introduction of the Alabama Letters, he wrote, which lowered their estimates

to a lead of only 10,000 votes, "and this we believed he would most assuredly get."78

According to Greeley, Clay's campaign supporters understood and appreciated the

importance of New York.79 "Looking back through almost a quarter of a century on that

Clay canvass of 1844," Greeley later wrote autobiographically, "I say deliberately that it

should not have been lost, that it need not have been."8 Up to the appearance of Clay's

Alabama letter, he seemed quite likely to carry "every great Free State," including New

York, Pennsylvania, and Indiana. Maine and New Hampshire voted strongly for Polk,

and his home state Tennessee went against him by a small majority. Clay lost Louisiana

"only by fraud," and by a majority of less than 700 in nearly 27,000 votes.81

Closer to the event, the Tribune had asked, Nov. 11, 1844, "Yet, we are beaten -

but how?" The answer: "By the throwing away of some 15,000 votes-nine-tenths of

them Whig on all questions of National Policy on the Bimey ticket."82 New York City









allegedly helped Whig opposition with "a heavy illegal vote," barely carrying the state

against them.83 Greeley was convinced that "eleventh-hour Abolitionists, who claimed of

all things to be opposed to the annexation of Texas," sacrificed enough votes upon Birney

to make Polk president. "Yet the false representation of Bimey, Leavitt & Co. that Clay

was as much for Annexation as Polk, and more likely to effect [sic] it, &c. &c. have

carried all these votes obliquely in favor of Annexation, War, and eternal Slavery."84

The final breakdown of votes was both narrow and sobering for the Whigs, as the

election's final results indicated the closest presidential race of the era. The following

chart, as published in the Tribune, listed popular majorities by state.

For Clay For Polk
Rhode Island 2,500 New Hampshire 10,000
Connecticut 3,000 New York 4,500
New Jersey 900 Pennsylvania 6,000
Maryland 3,300 Virginia 3,000
North Carolina 3,000
Ohio 6,000

Total 18,700 Total 23,500
Electors 58 Electors 95


According to published results, Clay had in the whole Union 1,288,533 popular votes to

1,327,325 for Polk.85 Both candidates had secured 48.1 percent of the popular vote, but

Polk won 170 electoral votes. Clay won 105 electoral votes, losing a critical 2.3 percent

of the popular vote to Bimey in New York. Bimey had in all 62,263 votes, "so that Mr.

Polk was preferred by a plurality, not a majority, of the entire people. But that did not

affect the fact nor the validity of his election."86








The New York Whigs were devastated. A margin of 15,812 votes cast for Birney in

the state 237,588 for Polk and 232,482 for Clay had contributed to their defeat. The

votes cast for Bimey, "which were worse than squandered in New York, to say nothing

of the thousands thrown away elsewhere," wailed Weed, "have not only made shipwreck

of every other public interest, but threaten to extend the links and strengthen the chains of

slavery." Weed struggled with Greeley and other Whig supporters to find a redemptive

value from the Bimey influence. "Bimeyism will not again have power, by casting its

weight into the scale of slavery, to make freedom the beam," Weed wrote. "The Whig

party, as philanthropic as patriotic, will steadily pursue its enlightened policy, until

measures designed and calculated to secure the elevation and prosperity of those who are

free, and the ransom and happiness of all who are held in bondage throughout the Union,

have been carried into full and triumphant effect."87

The True Principles of Government

Weed held out hope that the results of the election, "however disastrous in other

respects," would "open the eyes of the people to the reckless designs and fatal tendencies

of ultra Abolitionists."88 But the failure of the 1844 campaign weighed heavily on him,

and he became one of the first of the Whigs' New York circle to disassociate himself

with the party. "The country owes much of its misrule and miser," wrote Weed bitterly,

"to the action of minorities, well-meaning, patriotic, but misguided minorities."89 He

considered leaving the newspaper industry and, for a period, politics altogether. Word

traveled outside of the Whigs' inner circle, distressing Governor Patterson who wrote

Weed, "I hear some talk about your leaving the 'Evening Journal,' and I protest against it

most earnestly and solemnly."'9









Meantime, Greeley despaired, but he attempted to minimize the failure in the pages

of the Tribune by suggesting that a return to Whig prominence would occur in 1848. He

was pleased to cite the Clay campaign as one of his greatest journalistic successes. In

later years, he recalled that the newspaper was issued in the prime of his life, when he

was 33 years old, and he knew the industry as well as any editor. In his own estimate, the

Clay Tribune was "one of the most effective daily political journals ever issued." It sold

for 2 cents, and it had 15,000 daily subscribers when the canvass closed.91

Greeley's coverage of the Clay campaign had featured a number of innovations that

celebrated the editor's creative impulses. The Tribune carried campaign news and the

same basic design until Nov. 8, 1844, just a few days after the results of the election had

become clear. On Nov. 9, 1844, after Greeley accepted Clay's defeat, the design of the

column returned to a more basic news format.92

Greeley could not hide from his fellow workers a deep sense of loss after Clay's

defeat. His strenuous, ultimately futile work at the Tribune inflicted a heavy physical and

psychological blow. Weed and Seward were first among his closest associates to detect

his bouts with melancholia and related infirmities, which appeared as chronic conditions

after 1844; however, Greeley, the most atypical of the Whigs, remained truest to the party

spirit in his taste for constructive social programs expressed in the Tribune's liberal

editorial policy.9' The Tribune continued to bear the dying words of Hamson as its

motto, "I desire you to understand the true principles of the government. I wish them

carried out. I ask nothing more."94

Amidst the same columns announcing Clay's defeat, the Tribune implored readers

to "hold fast to our own party and our own name!" An increasing number of voices called









upon the Whigs to compromise their effort, and some even suggested a makeover under a

different party name. "It is a standing reproach with our opponents that we need or take a

new name every few years," Greeley wrote. He acknowledged that the suggestion

involved "nothing of which we should be ashamed," but it implied that members could

no longer confess "a strong attachment to the good old Revolutionary name of Whig."

The Whigs stumbled through the interim to the next election. Some reorganized

under alternative party affiliations and secret orders, but the Tribune remained committed

to the Whigs. Greeley dismissed attempts to scrap the party or denigrate its name. "Our

forefathers bore and were proud of it; it is short, pithy, and implies Resistance to

Executive Despotism an evil to which ultra Democracy perpetually tends," he wrote. "It

has come to imply also resistance to that baleful, blighting Jacobinism which seeks to

array the Poor against the Rich, the Laborer against the Capitalist, and thus embroil

Society in one universal net-work of jealousies and bitter hatreds."96

Notes


I "The Great Whig Young Men's Convention," New York Daily Tribune, May 4,
1844. The speech was not delivered in person by Clay but read at the convention and
published in transcript form. "I request you, gentlemen, in announcing to the Convention
my acceptance of the nomination," Clay wrote, "to express the very great satisfaction I
derive from the unanimity with which it has been made."

2 "New York Daily Tribune, May 6, 1844. "The following are Resolutions adopted
by the Young Men's National Convention."

3 "For President, Henry Clay. For Vice President, Theo. Frelinghuysen," New
York Daily Tribune, May 3, 1844, to Nov. 9, 1844. The first such column ran May 3,
1844.

4 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 140.

5 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.









6 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 142.

Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 467.

Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 136.

Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 41h ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 128.

10 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 136.

James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 395-
396. Parton reported from inside the office of the Tribune and described a catalogue
posted on the door entitled, "Tribune Directory. Corrected May 10, 1854. A list of
Editors, Reporters, Publishers, Clerks, Compositors, Proof-Readers, Pressmen, &c.,
employed on the New York Tribune."

12 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 137.

13 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 142.

14 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4"' ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 128.
15 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 140.

1" Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amrno, 1868.)

17 "To Our Patrons," The New-Yorker, Saturday, Sept. 11, 1841, v.11, no.26, 409.

18 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed lI, ii.. His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 468.

'9 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4"h ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 128.

21 Edwin Emery and Michael Emery, The Press and America, An Interpretive
History of the Mass Media 4th ed. (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 1978), 141.
Morse sent the first telegraphic message published in a newspaper to the Baltimore
Patriot, "One o'clock There has just been made a motion in the House to go into
committee of the whole on the Oregon question. Rejected ayes, 79; nays, 86."
21 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 142.









22 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 138.

23 John W. Moore, Printers, Printing, Publishing, and Editing, 2nd ed., (New
York: Burt Franklin, 1886, Vol. 167), 35-39; See also: Donald K. Brazeal, Technology
Revisited: A Fresh Examination of the 1830s Penny Press and Printing Presses,
Presented at the Symposium on the 19h" Century Press, the Civil War, and Free
Expression, November 2002.

24 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 193.
Park Benjamin of the Evening Sentinel revealed one such occasion in which the publisher
of the Sun developed "a conspiracy to crush the New York Tribune" in order to thwart
Greeley's growing acclaim.

25 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 138.

26 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 193.

27 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 138.

28 New York Herald, Sept. 14, 1842.

29 James L. Crouthamel, Bennett's New York Herald and the Rise of the Popular
Press (Syracuse University Press: Syracuse, New York, 1989), x.

30 New York Daily Tribune, Aug. 20, 1853.

31 James L. Crouthamel, Bennett's New York Herald and the Rise of the Popular
Press (Syracuse University Press: Syracuse, New York, 1989), x.

32 New York Daily Tribune, Aug. 20, 1853.

33 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 91-93.

34 Thurlow Weed, Lijf of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 91-93.

Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 96, 97.

6 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 96, 97.

Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 96, 97.










'8 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 93.

39 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 507.

40 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 94.

41 Joseph S. Myers, "The Genius of Horace Greeley," Journalism Series
(Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University Press, No. 6, 1929), 14.
42 Horace Greeley to Caleb Cushing, Dec. 29, 1841, Horace Greeley Papers,
Durham, NC: Duke University.

I Iull.. Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 1), 470. Greeley's
politicizing was mixed with contempt for Tyler's disregard for Whig interests. He wrote
Weed from Washington, D.C., Dec. 15, 1841, having stayed "long enough to be
satisfied" that Tyler and his newly appointed Democratic cabinet would not "harmonize
with the Whig party," nor did they "want peace, or to carry their measures, but mean to
keep up the quarrel as long as possible, with a view to the succession."

44 New York Daily Tribune, June 29, 1843. He acknowledged writing an article
containing "something about 'nine steps out of twelve,'" which he alleged was aimed
solely at the "desired reconciliation between Mr. Tyler and the Whigs."

45 Horace Greeley to Caleb Cushing, Dec. 17, 1841, Horace Greeley Papers,
Durham, NC: Duke University. Perhaps Greeley alone did not notice the conflict of
interest apparent to his national audience: The editor, an outwardly humble man, cited his
own sense of fairness to argue on behalf of the Whigs, a party which he almost single-
handedly brought to the fore of national politics. "Is not the doctrine sound? Does it not
cover the whole ground?"

46 Horace Greeley to Caleb Cushing, Dec. 17, 1841, Horace Greeley Papers,
Durham, NC: Duke University.

47 New York Daily Tribune, Aug. 23, 1842.

New York Do..' Tribune, Feb. 12, 1842.
Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 95.









5o Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 125.

51 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 121.

52 H. Clay to Thurlow Weed, Sept. 12, 1842, Thurlow Weed Papers, New York:
University of Rochester.

53 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 170.

54 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 96.

55 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed i,,.. i,.in, His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 122.

56 Thurlow Weed to Francis Granger, March 11, 1844, Thurlow Weed Papers,
New York: University of Rochester.

57 Thurlow Weed to Francis Granger, March 15, 1844, Thurlow Weed Papers,
New York: University of Rochester.

58 Thurlow Weed to Francis Granger, April 8, 1844, Thurlow Weed Papers, New
York: University of Rochester.

59 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 119.
S, i.,,, %-.. Greeley, The American Conflict (Chicago and Hartford: O.D. Case &
Co., 1864-66, Vol. 1), 168.

61 Thurlow Weed, Life It Ii 't. .*. Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 119.

62 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 120.
63 Horace Greeley, The American Conflict (Chicago and Hartford: O.D. Case &
Co., 1864-66, Vol. 1), 166.

64 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 120.









65 Thurlow Weed to Francis Granger, Sept. 3, 1844, Thurlow Weed Papers, New
York: University of Rochester.

66 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 120.

67 New York Daily Tribune, Oct. 17, 1844, "This is the last paper which will reach
some thousands of our subscribers before the great contest is decided, and Henry Clay or
James K. Polk elected President of the United States. Allow us to address a few words to
you, then, brethren in the Whig Cause!"
68 "The Question Settled," New York Daily Tribune, Oct. 18, 1844.

69 "The Question Settled," New York Daily Tribune, Oct. 18, 1844.

70 "Whig Electoral Ticket," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 1, 1844.

71 "The Election Our City," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 6, 1844.

72 "The State. By The Night Boat," New York i ',,, Tribune, Nov. 8, 1844.

73 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 124.

74 "Honor the True!" New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 9, 1844. "Abolition has done
its worst with us ... Ah! But the 'Liberty' vote of Pennsylvania is some Three or Four
Thousand; that of New-York is some Ten to Fifteen Thousand possibly Twenty
Thousand nine-tenths of it taken from the Whigs. It was not merely the vote of the
Abolitionists that hurt us their desperate effects were felt in defaming Mr. Clay and
confusing the public mind with regard to Texas. Their assurance made thousands believe
that Clay was as much an Annexationist as Polk. That finished us."

75 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amrno, 1868), 165.

76 "The Great Result," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 9, 1844. "In the great
contest from which we are emerging, there have been truths commended to the general
understanding, impressions made on the Moral Sense of the American People, which will
yet vindicate themselves and discomfit our time-serving adversaries. Whigs! Look aloft!"

77 "The Popular Vote," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844. Weed agreed
with Greeley's assessment that Bimey had cost the Whigs the election, and it the role of
the Liberty Party is cited commonly in secondary sources, although it is not entirely clear
that Clay would have lost the election even with the electoral votes of New York.
Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a Memoir
(Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 124. "New York would










have saved the Whigs, but that was not to be. Thanks to the 'third party,' New York went
against the state and national Whig candidates, Silas Wright becoming Governor."

78 "Our Defeat in New-York," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844. "Early in
the campaign, when it seemed to us impossible that the Van Buren men of this State
could be rallied to the unanimous and hearty support of James K. Polk, in view of the
circumstances of his nomination when it seemed to us impossible that avowed and
strenuous anti-Texas and Protective Tariff men should be brought to support an avowed
Annexationist and notorious Free Trader, we estimated that Mr. Clay would carry New
York by 20,000."

79 "The Popular Vote," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844.

so Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 167.

81 Horace Greeley, The American Conflict (Chicago and Hartford: O.D. Case &
Co., 1864-66, Vol. 1), 168.

82 "The Popular Vote," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844. "But even this
would not have availed to defeat us but for an overwhelming Illegal Vote, beyond any
precedent. Thousands of Irishmen employed on the Canada Public Works came over here
to help their brethren in the contest, as they understood it, for Foreigner's rights, and did
help them most effectually. The Alien unnaturalizedd) population of our own and other
Cities gave a large vote, generally offering at least one ballot each, and many of them
more than one. From the statements of those who know, but who could make public what
they know only at the hazard of their lives, we infer that not less than Three Thousand
votes for Polk were cast in our City alone by men who were not citizens of the United
States. Right gladly would we risk our life on this, that a thorough sifting of the Polls, so
as to throw out every illegal vote cast in the State, would give its Thirty-six Electors'
Vote to Clay and Frelinghuysen. But this cannot be had, and a South Carolina dynasty is
by the foulest deception and most atrocious fraud, fastened upon the American People for
four years to come. Bitterly will this be rued by many who cannot yet allow themselves
to get sober joy at the consummation."

83 "The Popular Vote," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844. Kentucky,
udr'..rr. from the few returns we have seen," gave Clay a large majority, and Indiana
also sided with him.
84 "The Popular Vote," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844. "The Naturalized
Citizens," according to the Tribune carried the state for Polk "by appeals to their
Religious and old world feelings and prejudices They have been told that they would
be deprived of their Political Rights and reduced to vassalage in the event of Mr. Clay's
election; and this, with still more monstrous bugbears, has driven from us those who were
formerly with us ... Our Whig strongholds where there are few adopted Citizens have
not fallen off, except under the influence of Abolition. But not merely is the Naturalized










Vote against us, but it is many thousands stronger than it would have been but for the
Philadelphia Riots and the Catholic dread of Nativism. All our Courts that could
Naturalize were crowded with applicants for citizenship for weeks before election, and
voters were turned out at some of them with astonishing celerity. We hear that some of
the judges have been employed for days since the election in signing the affidavits, &c.,
which they appear on the record as having executed before the Election."

85 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amo, 1868), 166.
Whig alternate Hugh L. White posted no returns, and other candidates combined won 0
electoral votes and 0.1 percent of the popular vote.

86 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 166.

87 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Arno, 1868), 165.

88 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 126.

9 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 124.

')0 Thurlow Weed, Life of Thurlow Weed Including His Autobiography and a
Memoir (Boston, New York: Houghton Mifflin and Co., 1883-84, Vol. 2), 123, 24.

91 Horace Greeley, Recollections of a Busy Life (New York: Amrno, 1868), 167.
92 "For President, Henry Clay. For Vice President, Theo. Frelinghuysen," New
York Daily Tribune, May 3, 1844, to Nov. 9, 1844.

93 Joseph S. Myers, "The Genius of Horace Greeley," Journalism Series
(Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University Press, No. 6, 1929), 14, 15.

94 James Parton, Life of Horace Greeley (New York: Mason Brothers, 1855), 192.

95 "Native Americanism," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844.

96 "Native Americanism," New York Daily Tribune, Nov. 11, 1844.




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