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Constitutional Union Party Ticket

Constitutional Union Party Ticket

On May 9 a group consisting mainly of old-line Whigs and a few former American Party members (also known as "Know Nothings") met in a national convention in Baltimore, Maryland. They called themselves the Constitutional Union Party. On the second ballot delegates chose former Senator John Bell of Tennessee as their presidential nominee, and Edward Everett of Massachusetts as his running mate. The new party appealed to Americans to set aside the controversy over slavery and its extension into the western territories that had driven the nation to the brink of Civil War. Their platform emphasized the generalities of peace, union, and compromise, but neglected to propose specific means for securing these goals. Many Republicans and Democrats alike dismissed the Constitutional Unionists as "an old gentlemen's party," with its head planted firmly in the sand.

Permission: Chicago Historical Society
©Copyright 2002 Abraham Lincoln Historical Digitization Project