United States House of Representatives elections, 1870
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Elections to the United States House of Representatives were held in 1870 and 1871 to elect Representatives for the 42nd Congress, and were held in the middle of President Ulysses S. Grant's first term.
With Grant's administration rocked by a number of scandals (including a shady deal for gold speculation that led to a crash in the market and several business deals that saw high-ranking governmental officials gain kickbacks) and Reconstruction winding down, his Republican Party lost seats to the opposition Democratic Party but retained an overall majority. Also, since the Democratic Party controlled governments were reestablishing themselves in some portions of the South, the Democrats were able to make huge gains in this election.
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|Mississippi[Note 6][Note 7]||District||5||5||0|
+ 1 at-large
|New Hampshire[Note 8]||District||3||0||3||3||3|
|North Carolina[Note 6]||District||7||2||4||5||4|
|Pennsylvania[Note 6]||District||24||13[Note 10]||3||11||3|
|South Carolina[Note 6]||District||4||4||0|
|West Virginia[Note 6]||District||3||1||2||2||2|
The previous election included 5 Conservatives
In 1845, Congress passed a law providing for a uniform nationwide date for choosing Presidential electors. This law did not affect election dates for Congress, which remained within the jurisdiction of State governments, but over time, the States moved their Congressional elections to this date as well. In 1870, there remained 12 States that held elections before Election Day, and 4 that held it after at this time:
- Early elections:
- December 1, 1869 Mississippi
- Mississippi was a special case, having held elections for both the 41st Congress upon readmission and for the 42nd Congress on the same day
- June 6 Oregon
- August 4 North Carolina
- September 6 Vermont
- September 12 Maine
- October 11 Indiana, Iowa, Nebraska, Ohio, Pennsylvania
- October 25 West Virginia
- November 1 South Carolina
- December 1, 1869 Mississippi
- Late elections:
|California 1||Samuel Beach Axtell||Democratic||1867||Retired
|Sherman O. Houghton (R) 51.6%
Lawrence Archer (D) 48.4%
|California 2||Aaron Augustus Sargent||Republican||1868||Incumbent re-elected||Aaron Augustus Sargent (R) 54%
James W. Coffroth (D) 46%
|California 3||James A. Johnson||Democratic||1867||Retired
|John M. Coghlan (R) 51.7%
George Pearce (D) 48.3%
|Florida at-large||Charles M. Hamilton||Republican||1868||Retired
|Josiah T. Walls (R) 51.3%
Silas L. Niblack (D) 48.7%
Niblack subsequently successfully challenged Walls' election, and took Florida's at-large seat on January 29, 1873.
|Ohio 1||Peter W. Strader||Democratic||1868||Retired
|Ohio 2||Job E. Stevenson||Republican||1868||Re-elected|
|Ohio 3||Robert C. Schenck||Republican||1862||Lost Re-election
|Ohio 4||William Lawrence||Republican||1864||Retired
|Ohio 5||William Mungen||Democratic||1866||Retired
|Ohio 6||John Armstrong Smith||Republican||1868||Re-elected|
|Ohio 7||James J. Winans||Republican||1868||Lost Re-nomination
|Ohio 8||John Beatty||Republican||1868 (s)||Re-elected|
|Ohio 9||Edward F. Dickinson||Democratic||1868||Lost Re-election
|Ohio 10||Erasmus D. Peck||Republican||1870 (s)||Re-elected||
|Ohio 11||John Thomas Wilson||Republican||1866||Re-elected||
|Ohio 12||Philadelph Van Trump||Democratic||1866||Re-elected|
|Ohio 13||George W. Morgan||Democratic||1868||Re-elected||
|Ohio 14||Martin Welker||Republican||1864||Retired
|Ohio 15||Eliakim H. Moore||Republican||1868||Retired
|Ohio 16||John Bingham||Republican||1864||Re-elected||
|Ohio 17||Jacob A. Ambler||Republican||1868||Re-elected||
|Ohio 18||William H. Upson||Republican||1868||Re-elected||
|Ohio 19||James A. Garfield||Republican||1862||Re-elected||
- Majority of states held elections on November 8, 1870 (i.e. Election Day).
- Includes 1 Independent Republican.
- Note that Dubin (p. 221) records 9–10 "Conservatives", and approximately 94 Democrats, as being elected to the 42nd Congress. This contrasts with Martis (pp. 124–125) which offers no separate accounting of "Conservatives" from Democrats and thus records a total of 104 Democratic members of the 42nd Congress.
- Two Liberal Republicans were elected: Gustavus A. Finkelnburg elected to MO-02, and James G. Blair elected to MO-08.
- Includes 2 Liberal Republicans and 1 Independent Republican.
- Elections held early.
- Elections held at the same time as elections for 41st Congress.
- Elections held late.
- Includes 2 Liberal Republicans: Gustavus A. Finkelnburg elected to MO-02, and James G. Blair elected to MO-08.
- Includes 1 Independent Republican, John V. Creely, elected to PA-02.
- Previous election had 5 Conservatives.
- Dubin, Michael J. (March 1, 1998). United States Congressional Elections, 1788-1997: The Official Results of the Elections of the 1st Through 105th Congresses. McFarland and Company. ISBN 978-0786402830.
- Martis, Kenneth C. (January 1, 1989). The Historical Atlas of Political Parties in the United States Congress, 1789-1989. Macmillan Publishing Company. ISBN 978-0029201701.
- Moore, John L., ed. (1994). Congressional Quarterly's Guide to U.S. Elections (Third ed.). Congressional Quarterly Inc. ISBN 978-0871879967.
- "Party Divisions of the House of Representatives* 1789–Present". Office of the Historian, House of United States House of Representatives. Retrieved January 21, 2015.
- Office of the Historian (Office of Art & Archives, Office of the Clerk, U.S. House of Representatives)