Woodrow Wilson * 1913-1921
Woodrow Wilson (1856-1924)
Term of Office: 1913-1921
Woodrow Wilson, a Democrat, was victorious in both the 1912 and 1916 presidential elections. His running mate in both elections was Thomas R. Marshall (1854-1925).
In 1912 they defeated Theodore Roosevelt, who ran as the Progressive candidate of the "Bull Moose" party, William Howard Taft, the Republican candidate, and Eugene Victor Debs of the Socialist Party. The Progressives had been nicknamed the "Bull Moose" Party stemming from the comment made by Teddy Roosevelt, "I feel as fit as a Bull Moose." In the 1916 campaign Wilson defeated the Republican candidate, Charles Evans Hughes (1862-1948), and A. L. Benson of the Socialist Party.
Wilson was known as a progressive and once served as president of Princeton University. As president he secured the passage of the Child Labor Law and eight-hour work day legislation for railroad workers. A Federal Income Tax was also officially established under Wilson's administration by the 16th Amendment in 1913, as well as the passage of the Federal Reserve Act. Wilson's 1916 campaign for re-election was based upon the slogan that "He kept us out of war", referring to the war in Europe between Germany and England. By 1917, however, the United States had entered World War I in an effort to make the world, "safe for democracy." A major disappointment for him was the failure of Congress to pass the Versailles Treaty following World War I. This Treaty included the establishment of a League of Nations which Wilson saw as a step during building a lasting peace. For his efforts, however, he became the second President to win the Nobel Peace Prize.
It was during Wilson's administration, in August 1920, that the 19th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified giving women the right to vote.
The 1912 "Don't Bolt" button refers to the effort being made to keep Republican voters loyal to Taft, rather than having them throw their support behind Teddy Roosevelt and the Progressive Party thus splitting the Republican vote and ensuring a victory for Wilson.
Also depicted is a button from the Prohibition Party candidates in 1912, Eugene Chafin (1852-1920), and Aaron Watkins (1863-1941). The Prohibition Party candidates received 207,972 votes in 1912, about 1.5% of the votes cast in the Presidential election that year.
Wilson suffered a near-fatal stroke in office. He finished his term bedridden and partially paralyzed.
A handsome Progessive Party, also known as the Bull Moose Party, Delegate Badge from the 1912 New York State Convention can be seen at About Al Feldstein
Campaign paraphernalia, United States, History; Presidents, United States, Election, History.
United States, 1896-2008