ELECTION OF 1872: THE PASSING OF THE FIRST GENERATION

In 1872 one wing of the Republican Party, called "Stalwarts," nominated Ulysses S. Grant for president, despite the scandals that had rocked his administration. Disaffected members of the party, called "Liberal Republicans," were concerned about the immorality of the national party and the disarray in Republican governments in the South and urged a new course. They nominated Horace Greeley, editor and former abolitionist, for president. The Democratic Party, still disorganized from its electoral defeat in 1868, could do no better than endorse the Liberal Republican nominee. The Stalwarts painted Greeley as an apostate and papered over internal differences among Republicans on such issues as civil service reform, tariffs, and Reconstruction policy, by "waving the bloody shirt," in effect reminding voters that the Democrats were the party of disunion and the Republicans were the true heirs of Washington, Lincoln, and the Union. The Stalwarts called in their patronage chits and turned out the vote for Grant and their friends. Although the Republicans would face continued stiff opposition from Democrats after 1872, with the election the Republicans emerged as the predominant party nationally and would remain so into the next century. In the 1872 election, the last new party became the Grand Old Party.

"A Leaf from History for our Foreign-Born Citizens," in Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, September 28, 1872.

"New York-Reception Given by Horace Greeley to the Committee of the Democratic National Convention, at his Chappaqua Farm...," in Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, August 3, 1872.

"Decorating the White House," in Harper's Weekly, June 1, 1872.

"The 'Liberal Conspirators (Who You All Know Are Honorable Men)," in Harper's Weekly, March 16, 1872.

"Grant's First and Last Vote," in Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, September 14, 1872.

"Our Modern Belshazzar. The People's Handwriting on the Wall," in Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, April 1, 1872.