As this is the midterm elections, in this story we will look at some elections over the years.

It was in 1845 that Congress passed the law designating the first Tuesday following the first Monday in November as election day. Prior to that date, states could hold elections at any time, as long as they were held within 34 days of the first Wednesday in December.

Tuesday was chosen as the most auspicious day for elections because of the rural and agricultural culture of 19th century America. Most citizens worked as farmers and lived far from polling stations. Sunday was for church and Wednesday was market day so Tuesday was the best day. November was after harvest, and usually before the arrival of harsher winter conditions.

And there was a time in Sheridan that was a holiday. From the Sheridan Daily Enterprise, November 2, 1909

Today in Sheridan County there are polling places in Sheridan, Story, Ranchester, Dayton, Clearmont, Arvada, Beckton, Big Horn, Wyarno, Prairie Dog, and Dayton.

In 1892, the Northern Wyoming Stinger, in September 1892, published this: The primary meeting of the various constituencies for the election of delegates to the convention will take place on Tuesday, October 4, 1892.

The following constituencies will be entitled to representation are: Pass, (I don’t know if it’s Passaic) 8 delegates; Dayton, 5; Ohlman, 2; Tongue River, 1; Bingham, 1; Beckton, 2; Great Horn, 5; the town of Sheridan; Sheridan, 5; lower prairie dog, 2; Banner 3; Big Red, 1; Husson, 3 years old; Large corrals, 1; Suggestions, 1; Bald Mountain, 2.

Many of these towns have now disappeared and new ones have sprung up.

Like today, sometimes people vote for candidates as much for their personalities as for their policies.

Sheridan Enterprise on November 10, 1914. Governor-elect Kendrick – (Wyoming Tribune.) The people of Wyoming, their votes, have selected Hon. John B Kendrick by sheridan like governor. Mr. Kendrick is one of the bthe most famous citizens of this state. He first Return to political notoriety in 1910 whenhe has been elected state senator and received his Pavote for United States Senator Two years later he was again a candidate for United States Senator and was defeated by the Honorable FE Warren. (Warren served as Wyoming’s first governor, serving as territorial governor, appointed in 1885, until 1890, when Wyoming was granted statehood. Warren resigned as governor when he was elected to the United States Senate. Kendrick won the election in 1916) This g campaignve him a statewide acquaintance and makes him the logical candidate for governor on the democratic ticket. Mr. Kendrick is a man of great business, being engaged extensstrongly in raising cattle and owning valuable real estate in Sheridan. It’s a man ofattractive personality and excellent commercial ability. He will no doubt Craft a competent governor and to this end has the best wishes from the Wyoming Tribune

The Nagel Warren Mansion, Cheyenne. FE Warren purchased the mansion in 1910 where he received guests such as Presidents William H. Taft and Theodore Roosevelt. (photo vannoy)

Definitely trust (Republican Laramie) Judging by the estimate placed on Mr. John B. Kendrick by those who live in the northern part of the State, it must be admitted that he measures well for his position at which he has been elected. His majority in his home county was huge. He’s been a resident of the state for many years, has been very successful in his business, and has a reputation for being a man with a spine, and a spine is the best thing you can have in offices executives of that state. The people of Wyoming will wish Mr. Kendrick success in his efforts to give them good government and a fair deal. He promised them these two things.

PowellTribune. The majority of something over two thousand for Kendrick in his native county of Sheridan, and Mr. Ridgley’s failure to carry his native county, or even his native town, must not be accepted as absolute proof as to the character relative of the two men, but gives supporters or Mr. Kendrick here and elsewhere a special pleasure in not having heeded his opponent’s personal attacks and voting accordingly.

The campaign tactics of Mr. Ridgely and a number of his supporters were mistimed to say the least. The personal slander campaign will not be revived in Wyoming with any success.

As mentioned in the article above, vilification is nothing new in politics. One of the earliest examples was during a US presidential election in 1796, when Alexander Hamilton accused Thomas Jefferson of having slept with one of his slaves, Sally Hemings. And in 1828, considered one of the dirtiest political campaigns in US history, supporters of incumbent President John Quincy Adams called Andrew Jackson’s mother a prostitute and his wife, Rachel, a whore. .

This also happened in the Wyoming elections.

This from the Sheridan Enterprise Monday October 1914. John B. Kendrick – (Landing Eagle) John B Kendrick, Democrat-Progressive candidate for governor of Wyoming, according to the Rpublic newspapers, must be a badass. There is nothing badD that Kendrick didn’t take a chance – except to be a lawyer. as the editor of the Theunder the Eagle, he is past all hope. He Is eeven worseaAnd the Eagle man, who still has a desire to go to heaven when it passes. No paradise for Kendrick, if the Republican newspapers can keep it out they or they are ‘double-crossing’ him with Saint Peter, and place tangles of barbed wire in front of the pearly gates to trip him up.

This is hard to believe that a lonely man box be so bad that Kendrick, ayou a pinch, two men could be able to wade half way through the bad deeds attributed to him and come out alive, but for one Iindividual for being so outrageously, diabolically and outrageously evil that he surpasses everything belief. According to Republican logs, it is more than the limit. At the same time, the people of Wyoming will elect Kendrick (with all his sins) Governor by the largest majority ever given to a candidate for this office.

Office looking man vs Man looking office (Wheatland Times)Republican newspapers have long howledwellbut Kendrick’s”barrel’ and accused him of trying to buy his way in political position are now screaming because JB didn’t find it necessary to spend money to get the primary nomination, when his RRepublican opponent, Mr. Ridgely, spent more than five hundred dollars (About $15,000 in today’s dollars)as a primary election expense. Booth bosses can’t figure it out. The explanation is simple. In one case, it was an office that was looking for the man and in the other was the man desperate for the job. Friends of Mr. Kendrick, appreciating his splendid character and executive ability, and earnestly desiring that he be appointed Governor, even against his staff wishes, took it upon themselves to circulate petitions for his appointment entirely without his request and in many cases without his knowledge. It was only after these petitions were circulated and signed by thousands of citizens that Mr. Kendrick consented to become a candidate. He did not seek the nomination; he didn’t ask for it and made no effort to get it. It was a free offer and a compliment to a worthy man. It cost him nothing. thee On the other hand, all the overwhelming desire for Ridgely to be a candidate was confined to Mr. Ridgely’s ambitious bosom. For many years, he aspired to gubernatorial appointment.

Kendrick was a Democrat and served as Governor of Wyoming from 1915 until his resignation in 1917, when he was elected to the United States Senate. Kendrick served as a senator from March 1917 until his death in 1933.

Cheating accusations aren’t new either

The Lingle Herald, April 21, 1911

And, of course, political advertisements appeared in local newspapers. Today, television is the avenue of choice for political advertisements, but in the early 20th century, newspapers, radio, rallies, and “whistle-blowing” train rides were the only way for candidates to convey their messages to the public.

The weekly Boomerang, October 17, 1912

The Casper Herald, November 6, 1922

It is hard to imagine with the instant news we have today with television and the Internet, how slow communication was in the first part of our country.

In November 1860, the Pony Express carried news of President Lincoln’s election from Fort Kearny, Nebraska, 1,300 miles to Fort Churchill, Nevada, in six and a half days. The election pony carried a brief summary of the Eastern election results.

The 1920 election was the first to be broadcast on the radio, and radio listeners knew the outcome of the election (Republican Warren G. Harding won a landslide victory) before it appeared in the newspapers of the next morning.

During the 2020 elections, concerns were raised about the security of voting machines used in many constituencies. Interestingly, voting machines are not a new development.

From the Iron Gazette Hartville Laramie County, Wyoming, Friday 1899

Voting machine. In recent elections, voting machines were used for the first time in New York. They succeeded in all respects. They reduced the number of constituencies, eliminated the cost of printing ballot papers, worked easily and perfectly. The vote count was automatic. poll workers having nothing to do when the polls close but unlock the machines and enter the totals. Within forty-five minutes after the closing of the polls, the result of the vote for the head of the list was known. Each constituency, even the most distant, had reported to headquarters, and the tabulations had been made. In Ithaca, which is a small town, and where probably unusual speedy efforts had been made, the result of the town’s vote was known seven minutes after the polls closed. Similar results have been achieved in many other New York cities where voting machines have been used.

So whoever you vote for, voting is one of the most important rights we as American citizens have today. We have a responsibility to participate in our government by voting in elections. All citizens over the age of 18 cannot be denied the right to vote on the basis of race, religion, gender, disability or sexual orientation. So on Tuesday, November 8, vote for who you think will do the best job for Wyoming.




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