Nativism and Slavery: The Northern Know Nothings and the Politics of the 1850's

By Tyler Anbinder | Go to book overview

9
The Know Nothings and the Presidential Election of 1856

On June 22, 1856, after a fifteen-month tour of Europe, American party presidential candidate Millard Fillmore arrived in New York. Although the power and popularity of the Know Nothings had declined precipitously during Fillmore's absence, a warm welcome greeted the former President. Fireworks exploded as Fillmore's ship entered the harbor, Know Nothings fired fifty-gun salutes from both New York and New Jersey, and a committee of New York dignitaries presented him with keys to the city. American party officials did not arrange such festivities merely to demonstrate Fillmore's popularity. Nineteenth-century election etiquette discouraged overt campaigning by political candidates, but Know Nothing leaders realized that Fillmore could make impromptu remarks to the crowds that gathered to celebrate his return without breaching decorum. To provide Fillmore with many such speaking opportunities, his backers arranged similar ceremonies all along the route to his home in Buffalo.1

The speeches Fillmore delivered during his journey revealed how sharply the goals of the American party differed from those espoused during its heyday in late 1854 and early 1855. Instead of criticizing the political power of Catholics and immigrants, Fillmore attacked those who disturbed the harmony of the Union. He condemned "the present agitation" of the slavery issue, "which distracts the country and threatens us with civil war," and insisted that these conditions had been "recklessly and wantonly produced" by the adoption of the Kansas-Nebraska Act. Although the Democrats had initiated the crisis, Fillmore blamed the Republicans for the persistence of sectional hostility. He noted that the Republicans had "for the first time" nominated Northerners for both the presidency and vice presidency, "with the avowed purpose of electing these candidates by suffrages of one part of the

____________________
1
Robert J. Rayback, Millard Fillmore: Biography of a President ( Buffalo: Buffalo Historical Society, 1959), 405-6.

-220-

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
Nativism and Slavery: The Northern Know Nothings and the Politics of the 1850's
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
/ 330

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.