History of the House of Representatives

By George B. Galloway | Go to book overview

Chapter Three
THE COMPOSITION OF CONGRESS

AS THE YOUNG NATION GREW in population and expanded westward toward the Pacific, the size of the House of Representatives increased, although not at a corresponding pace. During the first half century the population quadrupled in number, growing from some 3.9 million in 1790 to 17 million in 1840, while Representatives in Congress were increasing from 65 to 232 members. By 1890 the population had almost quadrupled again, rising to 63 million persons who were represented at Washington by 357 Congressmen. And after another half century of amazing expansion, the nation had 132 million inhabitants in 1940, while the House of Representatives had limited its size since 1913 to 435 members. By 1960 the population had reached 180 million.

Since population grew more rapidly than the membership of the House of Representatives, the effect of these changes was gradually to increase the average number of inhabitants represented by each member. Thus during the First Congress the constituencies averaged about 33,000 persons compared with an average of 71,000 in 1840, 176,000 in 1890, 303,000 in 1940, and 390,000 in 1957. In other words, a member of the House today has almost twelve times as many constituents on the average as he had in 1790.

It is also interesting to note the effect of these changes upon the distribution of seats in the House of Representatives among the principal geographical regions of the country. The South controlled half the seats in the House in the first Congress and today accounts for 134 seats, 31 per cent of the total. New England, which had about one quarter of the seats in 1790, now has only 6 per cent of the total. The Middle Atlantic states, which were on a par with New England in the beginning, now have 20 per cent or more than three times as many Representatives as New

-21-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
History of the House of Representatives
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 334

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.