1852 Democratic National Convention

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1852 Democratic National Convention
1852 Presidential Election
FranklinPierce.png William Rufus DeVane King 1839 portrait.jpg
Nominees
Pierce and King
Convention
Date(s) June 1-June 5, 1852
City Baltimore, Maryland
Venue Maryland Institute for the Promotion of the Mechanic Arts [above Centre ("Marsh") Market]
Candidates
Presidential nominee Franklin Pierce of
New Hampshire
Vice Presidential nominee William R. King of Alabama
1848  ·  1856

The 1852 Democratic National Convention was held at the Maryland Institute in the eastern downtown business district of Baltimore, Maryland, just two weeks before the opposing Whig Party met in the same hall for their nominating convention. The Maryland Institute for the Promotion of the Mechanic Arts, then an academic institution founded 1825-1826 with a variety of curriculums including mechanical arts along with visual art and design, was located on the second floor of their recently constructed 1851 landmark structure with two clock towers at each end of the long structure set atop arched, stone and brick piers which covered the ancient "Centre Market", founded in the 1760's as the original main marketplace of old Baltimore Town. Located at Market Place (formerly Harrison Street) and South Frederick Street between East Baltimore Street on the north and Water Street (old colonial shoreline) to the south. It was also known as "Marsh Market" because of the old colonial marsh of Thomas Harrison then located along the western bank of the Jones Falls stream which flowed through downtown Baltimore to the Harbor), and east of "The Basin" (today's "Inner Harbor re-developed entertainment, commercial and hotel area) along the northern shore of the Patapsco River's Northwest Branch. 16th President Abraham Lincoln spoke at the Institute a decade later with his "Liberty Address" or "Baltimore Address" during the Sanitary Fair to raise money to benefit orphans and widows of Union Army soldiers and sailors, held by the United States Sanitary Commission in April 1864. Old Maryland Institute and the Centre Market buildings perished in the Great Baltimore Fire of February 1904. The Institute's buildings were rebuilt with three new parallel structures here for the marketplace and the second floors for the M.I.'s mechanical arts along with another "Main Building" at Mount Royal Avenue in northwestern city in 1906. They were razed in the 1980's for an entranceway into the new Baltimore "Metro" subway system, and one building (the old "Fish Market") was renovated as the "Port Discovery" childrens museum, part of the new "Power Plant Live!" entertainment complex of the 1990's.

This convention was notable for the hostility between several groups of the party, divided over the "Compromise of 1850". The convention was called to order by Democratic National Committee chairman Benjamin F. Hallett. Romulus M. Saunders served as the temporary convention chairman and John W. Davis served as the permanent convention president.

Presidential Candidates[edit]

Withdrew During Balloting[edit]

The Convention[edit]

Democratic Pierce/King campaign poster

As Democrats convened in Baltimore in June 1852, four major candidates vied for the nomination- Lewis Cass of Michigan, the nominee in 1848, who had the backing of northerners in support of the Compromise of 1850; James Buchanan of Pennsylvania, popular in the South as well as in his home state; Stephen A. Douglas of Illinois, candidate of the expansionists and the railroad interests; and William L. Marcy of New York, whose strength was centered in his home state. Throughout the balloting, numerous favorite son candidates received a few votes.

Cass led on the first 19 ballots, with Buchanan second, and Douglas and Marcy exchanging third and fourth places. Buchanan took the lead on the 20th ballot and retained it on each of the next nine tallies. Douglas managed a narrow lead on the 30th and 31st ballots. Cass then recaptured first placed through the 44th ballot. Marcy carried the next four ballots. Franklin Pierce of New Hampshire, a former Congressman and Senator, did not get on the board until the 35th ballot, when the Virginia delegation brought him forward as a compromise choice. He consolidated his support in subsequent voting and was nominated nearly unanimously on the 49th ballot.[1]

In a peace gesture to the Buchanan wing of the party, Pierce's supporters allowed Buchanan's allies to fill the second position, knowing that they would select Alabama Senator William R. King. On the second ballot, with only minor opposition, King finally obtained the Democratic Vice Presidential nomination. During the ensuing campaign, King's tuberculosis, which he believed he had contracted while living in Paris, denied him the active behind-the-scenes role that he might otherwise have played, although he worked hard to assure his region's voters with the statement that New Hampshire's Pierce was a "northern man with southern principles."

Ballots[edit]

Presidential Ballots[edit]

Presidential Ballot
Ballot 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th 13th 14th 15th 16th 17th 18th 19th 20th 21st 22nd 23rd 24th 25th
Franklin Pierce 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Lewis Cass 116 118 119 115 114 114 113 113 112 111 101 98 98 99 99 99 99 96 89 81 60 43 37 33 34
James Buchanan 93 95 94 89 88 88 88 88 87 86 87 88 88 87 87 87 87 85 85 92 102 104 104 103 101
William L. Marcy 27 27 26 25 26 26 26 26 27 27 27 27 26 26 26 26 26 25 26 26 26 26 27 26 26
Stephen A. Douglas 20 23 21 33 34 34 34 34 39 40 50 51 51 51 51 51 50 56 63 64 64 77 78 80 79
Others 40 33 36 34 34 34 35 35 31 32 31 32 33 33 33 33 34 34 33 33 44 46 50 54 56
Presidential Ballot
Ballot 26th 27th 28th 29th 30th 31st 32nd 33rd 34th 35th 36th 37th 38th 39th 40th 41st 42nd 43rd 44th 45th 46th 47th 48th 49th
Franklin Pierce 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 15 30 29 29 29 29 29 29 29 29 29 44 49 55 282
Lewis Cass 33 32 28 27 33 65 93 123 130 131 122 120 107 106 107 107 101 101 101 96 78 75 72 2
James Buchanan 101 98 96 98 91 83 74 72 49 39 28 28 28 28 27 27 27 27 27 27 28 28 28 0
William L. Marcy 26 26 26 26 26 26 26 25 33 34 58 70 84 85 85 85 91 91 91 97 98 95 89 0
Stephen A. Douglas 80 85 88 91 92 92 80 60 53 52 43 34 33 33 33 33 33 33 33 32 32 33 33 2
Others 56 55 58 54 54 30 23 16 31 25 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 16 16 19 10

Source: US President - D Convention. Our Campaigns. (August 24, 2009).

Vice Presidential Ballots[edit]

Vice Presidential Ballot
Ballot 1st 2nd
William R. King 125 277
Solomon W. Downs 30 0
John B. Weller 28 0
David R. Atchison 25 0
Gideon J. Pillow 25 0
Robert Strange 23 0
William O. Butler 13 0
Thomas J. Rusk 13 0
Jefferson Davis 2 11
Howell Cobb 2 0
Abstaining 2 0

Source: US Vice President - D Convention. Our Campaigns. (August 25, 2009).

See also[edit]


References[edit]

  1. ^ William DeGregorio, The Complete Book of U.S. Presidents, Gramercy 1997

External links[edit]


Preceded by
1848
Democratic National Conventions Succeeded by
1856