Complex politics aren't all that modern
Check out our infographic to learn more about the Whigs, Know Nothings and Democrats that joined to form the Republican party in Indiana. Click the image for a full-screen version.
Even before the age of social media, television, and radio, candidates campaigned and used "spin."
Here is an ad (left) and a song from William H. Harrison’s 1840 campaign, depicting him as a rural cabin-dweller:
Old Tip he wears a homespun coat
He has no ruffled shirt-wirt-wirt
But Mat has the golden plate
And he's a squirt-wirt-wirt.
According to the Miller Center, Harrison's campaign "flooded the electorate with posters and badges extolling the virtues of their colorful, down-home 'log cabin and hard cider' candidate, the hero of Tippecanoe" after the incumbent's campaign derided Harrison as a backwoodsman.
Actually, Harrison was born to an aristocratic Virginia family and attended university, as did the well-off incumbent Martin Van Buren. Even when he lived in then-rural Vincennes, Indiana, Harrison's home (right) was no log cabin.
Spinning the "rustic" label to his advantage, Harrison stood in contrast to Van Buren and won the presidency in 1840.
November is Native American Heritage Month and plays host to many holidays. It's a very busy month for most of us, but if you're trying to plan activities for holiday guests or looking to get away from the holiday stress, check out these historically-inspired offerings:
Follow the North Star, weekends in Nov. (Fishers)
Genealogy for Night Owls, Nov. 7 (Indianapolis)
Re-imagining the Future of Indiana Avenue, Nov. 13 (Indianapolis)
Winterfest, Nov. 15 (Portland)
Victorian Christmas, Nov. 18 (Evansville)
Thanksgivingfest, Nov. 22 (Fort Wayne)
Handmade Indiana, Nov. 24 (Indianapolis)
If your organization is hosting a history-related workshop, lecture, or program, we'd love to share it with readers. Submit event details and a link to your website to our webmaster at firstname.lastname@example.org.