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The carnival campaign : how the rollicking 1840 campaign of "Tippecanoe and Tyler too" changed presidential elections forever

Author: Ronald G Shafer
Publisher: Chicago, Illinois : Chicago Review Press, [2016]
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Americans have come to expect that the nation's presidential campaigns will be characterized by a carnival atmosphere emphasizing style over substance. But this account of the pivotal 1840 election reveals how the now-unavoidable traditions of big money, big rallies, shameless self-promotion, and carefully manufactured candidate images first took root in presidential politics. Former Wall Street Journal reporter  Read more...
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Named Person: William Henry Harrison; William Henry Harrison
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Ronald G Shafer
ISBN: 9781613735404 1613735405
OCLC Number: 944463651
Description: viii, 279 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: A compromise candidate --
The first image campaign --
Hello, Columbus --
Old Tip: Hero or coward? --
Home sweet log cabin home --
Little Matty --
Palace of splendor --
Showdown in Baltimore --
A Democratic splinter --
Tippecanoe and rallies too --
The first gender gap --
Petticoat power --
Read all about us --
Sing us a song --
The marketing of a candidate --
Going negative: The Democrats fight back --
General Mum speaks --
Old Tip on the campaign trail --
Stump speakers --
The Buckeye Blacksmith --
Money talks --
Stealing votes --
Election returns --
Mr. Harrison goes to Washington --
Death of a president --
And Tyler too.
Responsibility: Ronald G. Shafer.

Abstract:

Americans have come to expect that the nation's presidential campaigns will be characterized by a carnival atmosphere emphasizing style over substance. But this account of the pivotal 1840 election reveals how the now-unavoidable traditions of big money, big rallies, shameless self-promotion, and carefully manufactured candidate images first took root in presidential politics. Former Wall Street Journal reporter Ronald G. Shafer tells the story of the election battle between sitting president Martin Van Buren, a professional Democratic politician from New York, and Whig Party upstart William Henry Harrison, a military hero who was nicknamed "Old Tippecanoe" after a battlefield where he fought and won in 1811. Shafer shows how the pivotal campaign of "Tippecanoe and Tyler Too" marked a series of firsts that changed presidential politicking forever: the first presidential campaign as mass entertainment, directed at middle- and lower-income voters; the first "image campaign," in which strategists painted Harrison as an everyman living in a log cabin sipping hard cider (in fact, he was born into wealth, lived in a twenty-two-room mansion, and drank only sweet cider); the first campaign in which a candidate, Harrison, traveled and delivered speeches directly to voters; the first one influenced by major campaign donations; the first in which women openly participated; and the first involving massive grassroots rallies, attended by tens of thousands and marked by elaborate fanfare, including bands, floats, a log cabin on wheels, and the world's tallest man. Some of history's most fascinating figures -- including Susan B. Anthony, Charles Dickens, Abraham Lincoln, Edgar Allan Poe, Thaddeus Stevens, and Walt Whitman -- pass through this story, which is essential reading for anyone interested in learning when image first came to trump ideas in presidential politics.

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