1848 and 1849 United States House of Representatives elections Information

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1848 and 1849 U.S. House of Representatives elections

←  1846 / 47 August 7, 1848 – November 6, 1849 [a] 1850 / 51 →

All 233 [b] seats in the U.S. House of Representatives
117 seats needed for a majority
  First party Second party
  Howell Cobb-crop.jpg Robert Charles Winthrop - Brady-Handy.jpg
Leader Howell Cobb Robert C. Winthrop
Party Democratic Whig
Leader's seat Georgia 6th Massachusetts 1st
Last election 112 seats 116 seats
Seats won 113 [b] 108
Seat change Increase 1 Decrease 8

  Third party Fourth party
 
Party Free Soil Know Nothing
Last election 0 seats 1 seats
Seats won 9 1
Seat change Increase 9 Steady

Speaker before election

Robert C. Winthrop
Whig

Elected Speaker

Howell Cobb
Democratic

Elections to the United States House of Representatives for the 31st Congress were held at various dates in different states from August 1848 to November 1849.

These elections spanned the presidential election of 1848 and took place amid the U.S. victory over Mexico in the (1846–48) Mexican–American War. The Whigs lost their House majority as Democrats, whose support had driven the war, gained a House plurality. Among minor parties, the Free Soil Party won nine Northern seats, while the American or " Know Nothing" Party retained one.

Following the discovery of gold in January 1848, California boomed, creating immediate pressure for statehood. The Compromise of 1850, though largely crafted in the Senate, was also passed by the House, brokering its admission to the Union. Anticipating statehood, California elected two Representatives at-large on November 11, 1849, to be seated September 11, 1850.

As neither major party held a majority when Congress convened on December 3, 1849, the election of a Speaker proved contentious. The Whigs split, with Northern Whigs nominating incumbent speaker Robert C. Winthrop of Massachusetts and Southern Whigs supporting Meredith P. Gentry of Tennessee. Although Democrats primarily supported Howell Cobb of Georgia, over a dozen other candidates also garnered support. Anti-slavery Free Soilers supported David Wilmot of Pennsylvania, author of the Wilmot Proviso, calling attention to Slave Power's hold over both major parties. After nearly three weeks of heated debate, the House suspended its majority rule for the Speaker election. Cobb was elected on the 63rd ballot by plurality. [1]

Special elections

Election summaries

Wisconsin was apportioned an additional seat in 1848, [2] and two more seats were added for the new state of California. [3]

113 11 108
Democratic [c] Whig
State Type Date Total
seats
Democratic Free Soil Whig Other
Seats Change Seats Change Seats Change Seats Change
Arkansas At-large August 7, 1848 1 1 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady
Illinois District August 7, 1848 7 6 Steady 0 Steady 1 Steady 0 Steady
Iowa District August 7, 1848 2 2 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady
Missouri District August 7, 1848 5 5 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady
Vermont District September 5, 1848 4 1 Steady 0 Steady 3 Steady 0 Steady
Maine District September 11, 1848 7 5 Decrease1 0 Steady 2 Increase1 0 Steady
Florida At-large October 2, 1848 1 0 Steady 0 Steady 1 Steady 0 Steady
Georgia District October 2, 1848 8 4 Steady 0 Steady 4 Steady 0 Steady
South Carolina District October 9–10, 1848 7 7 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady
Ohio District October 10, 1848 21 11 Increase1 2 Increase2 8 Decrease3 0 Steady
Pennsylvania District October 10, 1848 24 9 Increase2 1 Increase1 13 Decrease3 1 [d] Steady
Delaware At-large November 6, 1848 1 0 Steady 0 Steady 1 Steady 0 Steady
Michigan District November 7, 1848
( Election Day) [e]
3 2 Decrease1 0 Steady 1 Increase1 0 Steady
New Jersey District 5 1 Steady 0 Steady 4 Steady 0 Steady
New York District 34 1 Decrease10 1 Increase1 32 Increase9 0 Steady
Wisconsin District 3 [f] 1 Decrease1 1 Increase1 1 Increase1 0 Steady
Massachusetts District November 13, 1848 10 [g] 0 Steady 1 Increase1 8 Decrease2 0 Steady
1849 elections
New Hampshire District March 13, 1849 4 2 Steady 1 Increase1 1 Steady 0 Decrease1 [h]
Connecticut District April 2, 1849 4 2 Increase2 1 Increase1 1 Decrease3 0 Steady
Rhode Island District April 4, 1849 2 0 Decrease1 0 Steady 2 Increase1 0 Steady
Virginia District April 26, 1849 15 13 Increase4 0 Steady 2 Decrease4 0 Steady
Tennessee District August 2, 1849 11 7 Increase1 0 Steady 4 Decrease1 0 Steady
Alabama District August 6, 1849 7 5 Steady 0 Steady 2 Steady 0 Steady
Indiana District August 6, 1849 10 8 Increase2 1 Increase1 1 Decrease3 0 Steady
Kentucky District August 6, 1849 10 4 Steady 0 Steady 6 Steady 0 Steady
Texas District August 6, 1849 2 2 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady 0 Steady
North Carolina District August 7, 1849 9 3 Steady 0 Steady 6 Steady 0 Steady
Maryland District October 3, 1849 6 3 Increase1 0 Steady 3 Decrease1 0 Steady
Louisiana District November 5, 1849 4 3 Steady 0 Steady 1 Steady 0 Steady
Mississippi District November 5–6, 1849 4 4 Increase1 0 Steady 0 Decrease1 0 Steady
California At-large November 11, 1849 [i] 2 1 Increase1 0 Steady 0 Steady 1 [j] Increase1
Total [b] 232 113
48.7%
Increase1 9
3.9%
Increase9 108
46.6%
Decrease8 2
0.9%
Steady
House seats
Democratic
48.71%
Free Soil
3.88%
Know Nothing
0.43%
Whig
46.55%
Others
0.43%

Alabama

Arkansas

California

California two at-large members were elected November 11, 1849 in anticipation of statehood.

District Incumbent Party First
elected
Result Candidates
California at-large
2 seats on a general ticket
None New seat.
New member elected.
Independent gain.
  • Green tickY George W. Wright (Independent) 22%
  • Green tickY Edward Gilbert (Democratic) 20.6%
  • Rodman M. Price 16.3%
  • P. A. Morse 8.3%
  • Lewis Dent 8.2%
  • E. J. C. Kewen 7.3%
  • W. M. Sheppard 7.2%
  • William E. Shannon 5.4%
  • Peter Halsted 2.4%
  • L. W. Hastings 0.9%
  • Pierson B. Reading 0.7%
  • W. H. Russell 0.4%
  • J. S. Thompson 0.3%
  • Kimball H. Dimmick 0.2%
None New seat.
New member elected.
Democratic gain.

Connecticut

Delaware

Florida

Florida's single at-large member was elected October 2, 1848.

District Incumbent Party First
elected
Result Candidates
Florida at-large Edward C. Cabell Whig 1846 Incumbent re-elected.

Georgia

Illinois

Indiana

Iowa

Kentucky

Louisiana

Maine

Maryland

Massachusetts

Mississippi

Missouri

New Hampshire

New Jersey

New York

North Carolina

Ohio

Pennsylvania

Rhode Island

South Carolina

Tennessee

Texas

Vermont

Virginia

Wisconsin

Non-voting delegates

District Incumbent This race
Delegate Party First elected Results Candidates
Minnesota Territory None. New territory New seat.
New delegate elected July 7, 1849.
Democratic gain.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Excludes states admitted during the 31st Congress
  2. ^ a b c Includes late elections
  3. ^ There were 9 Free Soilers, 1 Know Nothing, and 1 Independent.
  4. ^ 1 Know Nothing
  5. ^ In 1845, Congress passed a law providing for a uniform date for choosing presidential electors (see: Statutes at Large, 28th Congress, 2nd Session, p. 721). Congressional elections were unaffected by this law, but the date was gradually adopted by the states for Congressional elections as well.
  6. ^ Increase of 1 seat.
  7. ^ One vacancy, in MA-04, for the duration of the 31st Congress (as no candidate received a majority of the vote after multiple elections).
  8. ^ Previous election had 1 Independent.
  9. ^ Seated September 11, 1850 after admission to the Union.
  10. ^ 1 Independent elected.

References

  1. ^ Brooks, Corey M. (2016). Liberty Power: Antislavery Third Parties and the Transformation of American Politics. University of Chicago Press. pp. 155–160. ISBN  978-0-226-30728-2. Retrieved March 2, 2019.
  2. ^ Stat.  235
  3. ^ Stat.  452

Bibliography

External links