Still in the shadow of the Civil War, the 1876 election remains one of the most contentious ever..
Democrats were accused of refusing to count African American votes as well as outright voter intimidation. Confusion was sown as Democratic ballots were printed with images of Abraham Lincoln. Republicans were suspected of misusing their majority on election boards.
Even the process for determining election results was a matter of debate…..
Congress, unable to reach a resolution, created a temporary Electoral Commission. Members of legislature and judiciary branches were chosen to hear arguments from Democratic and Republican teams of lawyers….
By March, the Commission recommended Hayes. Congress was in turmoil, and backroom deals with Democrats resulted in the Compromise of 1877. Reconstruction ended in exchange for a peaceful acceptance of Rutherford B. Hayes as President.
Our Library Collection — and members! — were part of the 1876 Election.
including any future election disputes !!!