1860’s Politics: Campaign Ads for Television?

Emerging Civil War 1860's Politics HeaderI was bored one morning and needed some history humor. So…I searched “1860 political” on YouTube. The results were amazing!

There were serious lectures and informational videos. And then there were political ads, likely created by students as part of their U.S. History class. Here are my favorites for the four candidates of the 1860 Presidential Election.Keep in mind that political ads like this reveal only the best about their candidates and tend to bash the other contenders. Also, you may find some interesting perspectives on the candidates – perhaps the students are using information gleaned with hindsight rather than the actual 1860 platforms?

All videos are less than two minutes! Watch them and let us know in the comments who you’d vote for (based on the videos).

Abraham Lincoln Campaign Ad

Stephen Douglas Campaign Ad

John Breckinridge Campaign Ad

John Bell Campaign Ad




6 Responses to 1860’s Politics: Campaign Ads for Television?

  1. These ads were quite mild in reference to history. With hindsight I would vote for Lincoln. However, if this is all I would know I may choose Bell.

  2. Ms. Bierle, A bit of fun there! I admire the teacher who guided their students into this project. How tame and positive these ads seem, when compared to the apocalyptic warnings, the racist cant, and the character assassination practiced at the time by public media and surrogate speakers.
    At least then, the candidates did not actively campaign and Americans did not have to hear them rant and rut about in the same way.

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