1846: James A. Saxton to William B. M’Crea

James A. Saxton

This great political letter announcing a great Whig victory in the mid-term elections of 1846 and the election of Ohio’s 19th Governor, William Bebb, was written by James A. Saxton to a fellow Whig, William B. M’Crea from Champaign County, Ohio.

James A. Saxton was born in Canton, Stark County, Ohio, on May 1, 1816, and he was the son of John and Margaret (Laird) Saxton.

Extensive election results show the Whig victory at the height of its power in the United States.

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[Addressed to William B. M’Crea, Esq., Addison, Champaign Co., Ohio]

Urbana [Ohio]
October 21, 1846

Dear Sir,

Supposing that the rumors adverse to our success in the State which have been in circulation for a day past have reached you, I drop you this line to say that all is safe.

The Statesman of Monday evening, received last night, gives it up and concedes that [William] Bebb is elected “by a small majority” – Senate a tie – House 8 certain, and probably ten Whig majority. The Statesman, in a separate paragraph, says it has information from Stark County, that in consequence of a mistake in the returns, [Hiram] Griswold, the Whig candidate for Senator, is elected in that county; if this be so, we shall have two of a majority in that body. The Statesman gives returns from all the counties in the State except five. According to this, allowing the five counties yet to be heard from to go as they did in ’44, [William] Bebbs majority will be at least 3,000. Glory enough for one year.

The returns from Pennsylvania come in gloriously. The Whigs have swept the state and our victory is complete.

The following is the result as far as heard from:

Congress – Whigs 12 – Locos 4 – Native 1.
Legislature – House, Whigs 36, a gain of 14 – Locos 20, with no gain. Last year the House stood: Loco 67 – Whig 33.

Senate – There were 11 Senators to elect this year, eight of whom were Locos and three Whigs. The Whigs are all re-elected – and in the eight Loco districts the Whigs have elected four, thus far. This secures a Whig majority in that body beyond he possibility of doubt.

James M. Power, the Whig candidate for Canal Commissioner is elected over Foster, the present incumbent by from ten to fifteen thousand majority.

This is unquestionably the greatest victory ever achieved by any party in the State – and the “powers that be” at Washington can read the handwriting on the wall!

Skies Bright, friend M’Crea. Yours respectfully in haste, — J. Saxton


For a biography of James A. Saxton, click here.

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