1888 Democratic National Convention

The 1888 Democratic National Convention was a nominating convention held June 5 to 7, 1888, in the St. Louis Exposition and Music Hall in St. Louis, Missouri.

St. Louis won the convention after a presentation in February 1888.

1888 Democratic National Convention
1888 presidential election
Cleveland and Thurman
Date(s)June 5–7, 1888
CitySt. Louis, Missouri
VenueExposition Building
Presidential nomineeGrover Cleveland of New York
Vice Presidential nomineeAllen G. Thurman of Ohio


Stephen M. White served as temporary chairman and Patrick A. Collins served as the convention's permanent president.[1]


The Democratic platform largely confined itself to a defense of the Cleveland administration, supporting reduction in the tariff and taxes generally as well as statehood for the western territories.

Presidential nomination

Presidential candidates

President Cleveland was renominated by acclamation. An event few could directly remember, as the last time such a thing happened was forty years previous. Presidents Franklin Pierce and Andrew Johnson lost the nomination in 1852 and 1868 respectively, and Presidents James K. Polk and James Buchanan refused to run for a second term.

Vice Presidential nomination

Vice Presidential candidates


Former Senator Allen G. Thurman of Ohio

John c black-illinois-1902

U.S. Commissioner of Pensions John C. Black of Illinois

Cleveland/Thurman campaign poster
1888 National Democratic Convention Delegate Ticket
Delegate ticket

After Cleveland was renominated, Democrats had to choose a replacement for Thomas A. Hendricks. Hendricks ran unsuccessfully as the Democratic nominee for vice-president in 1876, but won the office when he ran again with Cleveland in 1884. Hendricks served as vice-president for only eight months before he died in office on November 25, 1885.

Three names were placed in nomination: Allen G. Thurman, Isaac P. Gray, and John C. Black. Former Senator Thurman of Ohio was nominated for vice-president over Indiana Governor Gray, his nearest rival, and John C. Black, who trailed behind. Gray lost the nomination to Thurman primarily because his enemies brought up his actions while a Republican.[2]

Vice Presidential Ballot
1st Acclamation
Allen G. Thurman 684 822
Isaac P. Gray 101
John C. Black 36
Blank 1
1st Vice Presidential Ballot

See also


  1. ^ Our Presidents and How We Make Them by Alexander K. McClure Ayer Co Pub (February 1988) ISBN 0-8369-5532-3
  2. ^ Jacob Piatt Dunn, George William Harrison Kemper, Indiana and Indianans (p. 724).

External links

Preceded by
Chicago, Illinois
Democratic National Conventions Succeeded by
Chicago, Illinois
1888 Republican National Convention

The 1888 Republican National Convention was a presidential nominating convention held at the Auditorium Building in Chicago, Illinois, on June 19–25, 1888. It resulted in the nomination of former Senator Benjamin Harrison of Indiana for President and Levi P. Morton of New York, a former Congressman and Minister to France, for Vice President. During the convention, Frederick Douglass was invited to speak and became the first African-American to have his name put forward for a presidential nomination in a major party's roll call vote; he received one vote from Kentucky on the fourth ballot.

The ticket won in the election of 1888, defeating President Grover Cleveland and former Senator Allen G. Thurman from Ohio.

1888 United States presidential election

The United States presidential election of 1888 was the 26th quadrennial presidential election, held on Tuesday, November 6, 1888. Republican nominee Benjamin Harrison, a former Senator from Indiana, defeated incumbent Democratic President Grover Cleveland of New York. It was the third of five U.S. presidential elections in which the winner did not win a plurality or majority of the national popular vote.

Cleveland, the first Democratic president since the American Civil War, was unanimously re-nominated at the 1888 Democratic National Convention. He was the first incumbent president to win re-nomination since Grant was nominated to a second term in 1872. Harrison, the grandson of former President William Henry Harrison, emerged as the Republican nominee on the eighth ballot of the 1888 Republican National Convention. He defeated other prominent party leaders such as Senator John Sherman and former Governor Russell Alger.

Tariff policy was the principal issue in the election, as Cleveland had proposed a dramatic reduction in tariffs, arguing that high tariffs were unfair to consumers. Harrison took the side of industrialists and factory workers who wanted to keep tariffs high. Cleveland's opposition to Civil War pensions and inflated currency also made enemies among veterans and farmers. On the other hand, he held a strong hand in the South and border states, and appealed to former Republican Mugwumps.

Cleveland won a plurality of the popular vote, but Harrison won the election with a majority in the Electoral College. Harrison swept almost the entire North and Midwest, and narrowly carried the swing states of New York and Indiana.

Allen G. Thurman

Allen Granberry Thurman (November 13, 1813 – December 12, 1895) was a Democratic Representative, Ohio Supreme Court justice, and Senator from Ohio. He was the Democratic Party's nominee for Vice President of the United States in 1888.

Born in Lynchburg, Virginia, he and his family moved to Chillicothe, Ohio when Thurman was young. Thurman established a legal practice in Chillicothe with his uncle, William Allen, who later represented Ohio in the U.S. Senate. Thurman won election to the House of Representatives in 1844, becoming the youngest member of that body. He supported the James K. Polk administration during the Mexican–American War and voted for the Wilmot Proviso, which would have banned slavery from any territory gained from Mexico. He served a single term in the House before joining the Supreme Court of Ohio. He won election to the Senate in 1869, becoming an opponent to the Republican Reconstruction policy. During the disputed 1876 presidential election, Thurman helped establish the Electoral Commission. Thurman lost re-election in 1881 as the Republicans had won control of the Ohio legislature.

Thurman was a favorite son candidate for president in 1880 and 1884. The 1888 Democratic National Convention selected him as President Grover Cleveland's running mate, as Vice President Thomas A. Hendricks had died in office. The aging Thurman did not actively campaign and the Democratic ticket was defeated.

Alpheus B. Alger

Alpheus Brown Alger (October 8, 1854 – May 4, 1895) was a Massachusetts politician who served in the Massachusetts State Senate, as a member of the Board of Aldermen and as the Mayor of Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Archelaus D. Marsh

Archelaus D. Marsh was a politician from Celina, Ohio, United States. He was Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives during 1884 and 1885.

Archelaus D. Marsh was born April 19, 1844 on a farm near Buford, Highland County, Ohio. His parents were James P. and Ellen J. (Bachman) Marsh. His father was a native of Virginia and his mother of Pennsylvania, both born in 1812. His parents were married in 1842 in Hamilton, Ohio, and Archelaus D. was their only child.Marsh lived on his parent's Highland County farm until 1868, when he moved to Sardinia, Brown County, Ohio, where he read law under the direction of W. W. McKnight and Chilton A. White. In 1872 Marsh was admitted to the bar in Georgetown, Ohio, and began the practice of law at Sardinia. He moved to Celina, Mercer County, Ohio in October, 1874, and began a law practice there.Marsh was elected to the Ohio House of Representatives in 1877, and was re-elected in 1879. He was elected again in 1883, and with the Democrats in the majority, he was selected as Speaker of the House for the sessions in 1884 and 1885.In 1891, Marsh was a candidate for the Democratic nomination for Ohio's fourth congressional district. A long and bitter convention met at Greeneville for three days, adjourned for three weeks and met at Piqua for three days. With no result, new delegates were elected, and a convention met at Eaton for three more days, when Mr. Marsh withdrew, and Martin K. Gantz was finally nominated after about three thousand ballots.Marsh was a delegate to the 1888 Democratic National Convention. He continued as a criminal defense lawyer, before turning his energies toward representing railroad companies.Archelaus D. Marsh was married to Mary Jane Thompson of Highland County in 1865. They had children named Clayton, Clara, Nora, Vernie, Clarence, Arvesta, and Loree, and two who died in infancy. Marsh was a Freemason.Marsh suddenly died of an "attack of heart trouble" in 1904.

Calvin S. Brice

Calvin Stewart Brice (September 17, 1845 – December 15, 1898) was a Democratic politician from Ohio. Born at Denmark in Morrow County, he dropped out of Miami University in 1861 to join the Union Army. After a short stint in the Army, he returned to Miami University and earned his undergraduate degree from there in 1863. After the Civil War, Brice studied law at the University of Michigan and then started a business career where he amassed a fortune, largely in railroads. In 1879, he became president of the Lake Erie and Western Railroad and built the Nickel Plate Road in 1882. A Democrat, Brice was the chairman of the Democratic National Committee from 1889 until 1892 and won election to the Senate in 1890, serving a single term in office.

Cato Sells

Cato Sells (October 6, 1859 – 1948) was a commissioner at the Bureau of Indian Affairs from 1913 to 1921.

Edwin Hallowell

Edwin Hallowell (April 2, 1844 – September 13, 1916) was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.

Evan E. Settle

Evan Evans Settle (December 1, 1848 – November 16, 1899) was a U.S. Representative from Kentucky.

Born in Frankfort, Kentucky, Settle attended the public schools.

He was graduated from Louisville High School in June 1864.

He studied law.

He was admitted to the bar in 1870 and commenced practice in Owenton, Kentucky.

Settle was elected prosecuting attorney of Owen County in 1878, 1882, and 1886.

He resigned in 1887.

He served as member of the State house of representatives 1887-1890.

He served as delegate to the 1888 Democratic National Convention.

Settle was elected as a Democrat to the Fifty-fifth and Fifty-sixth Congresses and served from March 4, 1897, until his death in Owenton, Kentucky, November 16, 1899.

He was interred in Odd Fellows Cemetery.

Grover Cleveland 1888 presidential campaign

President of the United States Grover Cleveland's first term (1885-1889) was most notable "for its record number of vetoes (414), more than double the number issued by all his predecessors combined." During Cleveland's first term, controlling Congressional and wasteful spending was an important priority for him and his administration. Cleveland's vetoes (and other moves, such as issuing "an executive order [which was later rescinded] directing the return of captured Confederate battle standards to their home states") angered the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR), a powerful organization advocating for Union veterans. In his State of the Union Address in December 1887, President Cleveland called for lower tariffs and tariff reform, making it a major issue in the upcoming 1888 U.S. Presidential election.

Isaac Bell Jr.

Isaac Bell Jr. (November 6, 1846 – January 20, 1889) was an American businessman and diplomat.

John H. Senter

John H. Senter (November 11, 1848 - January 20, 1916) was a Vermont attorney and politician. He is most notable for his service as United States Attorney for the District of Vermont (1894-1898) and Mayor of Montpelier (1898-1900).

John Montgomery Smith

John Montgomery Smith (February 26, 1834 – May 14, 1903) was a politician in the state of Wisconsin.

Smith was a lawyer and politician. His father, William Rudolph Smith, was Attorney General of Wisconsin. He was born in Bedford Springs, Pennsylvania. He moved to Mineral Point, Wisconsin with his family. In 1852, he went to California but returned in 1855 and studied law. He was admitted to the Wisconsin bar in 1862. He served as Mayor of Mineral Point and served as District Attorney of Mineral Point. During the first administration of President Grover Cleveland, he negotiated treaties with the Ute Indians and then with the Chippewa Indians. He died in Mineral Point, Wisconsin.

List of fictional United States Democrats

The following is a list of fictional characters who have associated with the Democratic Party of the United States. The list can include television characters, film characters, literature characters, or fictional characters from any other medium.

Marvin H. Chamberlain

Marvin H. Chamberlain (November 5, 1842 – 1923) was the mayor of Detroit, Michigan.

Robert Patterson Clark Wilson

Robert Patterson Clark Wilson (August 8, 1834 – December 21, 1916) was a U.S. Representative from Missouri.

Born in Boonville, Missouri, Wilson moved with his parents to Platte County.

He attended William Jewell College, Liberty, Missouri, and was graduated from Centre College, Danville, Kentucky, in 1853.

He studied law.

He was admitted to the bar in 1854 and commenced practice in Seguin, Texas, in 1855.

He returned to Missouri in 1858.

He moved to Leavenworth, Kansas, in 1860.

He was a member of the first Kansas House of Representatives from March to June 4, 1861.

He returned to Missouri in 1861.

He served as member of the Missouri House of Representatives in 1871 and 1872 and served as Speaker of the Missouri House of Representatives both years.

He served as member of the Missouri State Senate in 1879 and 1880.

He served as delegate to the 1888 Democratic National Convention.

He served as president of the school board of Platte City, Missouri.

Wilson was elected as a Democrat to the Fifty-first Congress.

He was reelected to the Fifty-second Congress and served from December 2, 1889, to March 3, 1893.

He served as chairman of the Committee on Pensions (Fifty-second Congress).

He resumed the practice of his profession in Platte City, Missouri.

He died in Kansas City, Missouri, December 21, 1916.

He was interred in Marshall Cemetery, Platte City, Missouri.

Russell C. Falconer

Russell C. Falconer (February 4, 1851 – December 15, 1936) was a member of the Wisconsin State Senate.

St. Louis Exposition and Music Hall

St. Louis Exposition and Music Hall was an indoor exposition hall, Music Hall and arena in St. Louis, Missouri from 1883 to 1907.

Three national presidential nominating conventions were held in three separate buildings in or near the complex between 1888 and 1904 including the 1888 Democratic National Convention, 1896 Republican National Convention, and 1904 Democratic National Convention. In addition to the 1904 Democratic convention, it was used as a large venue for other conventions and congresses during the 1904 World's Fair.The 502 by 332 ft (153 by 101 m) exposition hall was built initially at a cost of US$750,000. It was designed by Jerome Bibb Legg and completed in 1884. Legg's most prominent existing building is Academic Hall at Southeast Missouri State University.Originally built to house the St. Louis Exposition, an annual fair, it covered 6 acres (2.4 ha) at Olive and 13th Streets and was one of the first buildings in the country to have electric lights.

The Music Hall, which was a home for the St. Louis Symphony, had a stage which could accommodate 1,500 people and claimed to be one of the world's largest. Its seating capacity was 3,500.In the winter of 1896 the Republican National Convention planned to be in a rebuilt permanent building in the center. However, it was determined that it would not be ready in time for the convention so a temporary wooden convention was erected on the lawn south of City Hall (three blocks south of the Exposition Hall). The temporary structure was erected within sixty days at cost of $60,000 including decorations.

Following the 1896 Convention, the temporary structure as well as the Exposition building were torn down and a new Coliseum was built on the site of the Exposition Building. The new Coliseum had an arena of 112 by 222 ft (68 m) with an 84 ft (26 m) ceiling. It had a single span trussed roof, with no columns or obstructions. The seating capacity was 7,000 but could be expanded to 12,000. It was rated at 10,500 for its 1904 convention.The whole structure including the new Coliseum and Music Hall were torn down in 1907 when the St. Louis Central Library was built at its location and the new St. Louis Coliseum was constructed.

Timeline of St. Louis

The following is a timeline of the history of the city of St. Louis, Missouri, United States.

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