1852 and 1853 United States Senate Elections
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1852 and 1853 United States Senate Elections

1852 and 1853 United States Senate elections

← 1850/51 Various dates 1854/55 →

20 of the 62 seats in the United States Senate (with special elections)
32 seats needed for a majority
  Majority party Minority party
 
Party Democratic Whig
Last election 33 seats 22 seats
Seats before 37 22
Seats won 10 4
Seats after 35 18
Seat change Decrease 1 Decrease 4
Seats up 10 9

  Third party Fourth party
 
Party Free Soil Know Nothing
Last election 2 seats
Seats before 3 New party
Seats won 2 1
Seats after 2 1
Seat change Decrease 1 Increase 1
Seats up 1

Majority Party before election


Democratic

Elected Majority Party


Democratic

The United States Senate elections of 1852 and 1853 were elections which had the Democratic Party gain two seats in the United States Senate, and which coincided with the 1852 presidential election. Only six of the twenty Senators up for election were re-elected.

As this election was prior to ratification of the seventeenth amendment, Senators were chosen by state legislatures.

Results summary

Senate Party Division, 33rd Congress (1853-1855)

  • Majority Party: Democratic (35-38)
  • Minority Party: Whig Party (19-17)
  • Other Parties: Free Soiler (2-5); Know Nothing (1)
  • Vacant: 5-1
  • Total Seats: 62

Change in composition

Before the elections

D1  
D2 D3 D4 D5 D6 D7 D8 D9 D10 D11
D21
Ala. (sp)
Ran
D20
Ala. (reg)
Ran
D19 D18 D17 D16 D15 D14 D13 D12
D22
Ark.
Ran
D23
Ga.
Unknown
D24
Ill.
Ran
D25
Ind. (sp)
Retired
D26
Iowa
Ran
D27
La. (reg)
Unknown
D28
La. (sp)
Resigned
D29
Maine
Retired
D30
Mich.
Retired
D31
Miss. (sp 1)
Unknown
Majority -> D32
Miss. (sp 2)
Miss. (reg)
Resigned
FS1 FS2 FS3
N.H.
Ran
V2
Conn. (sp)
V1
Calif. (sp)
D36
Va.
Ran
D35
Texas
Ran
D34
S.C. (sp)
Ran
S.C. (reg)
Unknown
D33
N.J. (sp)
Resigned
W21
Tenn.
Ran
W20
R.I.
Unknown
W19
N.C.
Ran
W18
N.J. (reg)
Unknown
W17
Mass.
Retired
W16
Ky.
Retired
W15
Del.
Retired
W14 W13 W12
W2 W3 W4 W5 W6 W7 W8 W9 W10 W11
W1  

As a result of the elections

D1  
D2 D3 D4 D5 D6 D7 D8 D9 D10 D11
D21
Ala. (sp)
Elected[a]
D20
Ala. (reg)
D Loss
Gain
D19 D18 D17 D16 D15 D14 D13 D12
D22
Ark.
Re-elected
D23
Calif. (sp)
Gain
D24
Conn. (sp)
Gain
D25
Ga.
Hold
D26
Ill.
Re-elected
D27
Ind. (sp)
Hold
D28
Iowa
Re-elected
D29
La. (sp)
Hold
D30
Mich.
Hold
D31
Miss. (sp 1)
Hold
Majority -> D32
N.H.
Gain
V2Miss. (reg)
D Loss
V1
Maine
D Loss
KN1
Ky.
Gain
D38
Va.
Re-elected
D37
Texas
Re-elected
D36
S.C. (sp)
Hold
S.C. (reg)
Hold
D35
R.I.
W Loss
Gain
D34
N.J. (sp)
Hold
D33
N.J. (reg)
Gain
V3
N.C.
W Loss
FS2 FS1 W18
Tenn.
Re-elected
W17
Mass.
Hold
W16
La. (reg)
Gain
W15
Del.
Hold
W14 W13 W12
W2 W3 W4 W5 W6 W7 W8 W9 W10 W11
W1  
Key:
D# Democratic
FS# Free Soil
KN# Know Nothing
W# Whig
V# Vacant

Race summaries

Special elections during the 32nd Congress

In these elections, the winners were seated during 1852 or in 1853 before March 4; ordered by election date.

State Incumbent Results Candidates
Senator Party Electoral history
California
(Class 1)
Vacant Legislature had previously failed to elect in 1850-1851.
New senator elected January 30, 1852 on the eighth ballot.[1]
Democratic gain.
Mississippi
(Class 2)
Henry S. Foote Democratic 1846 or 1847 Incumbent resigned January 8, 1852 to become Governor of Mississippi.
New senator elected February 18, 1852.
Whig gain.
Successor then retired at the end of the term, see below.
Green tickY Walker Brooke (Whig)
[data unknown/missing]
Mississippi
(Class 1)
John J. McRae Democratic 1851 (Appointed) Interim appointee replaced by an elected successor.
New senator elected March 17, 1852.
Democratic hold.
Green tickY Stephen Adams (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
Connecticut
(Class 1)
Vacant Legislature failed to elect.
New senator elected May 12, 1852.
Democratic gain.
Green tickY Isaac Toucey (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
South Carolina
(Class 2)
William F. De Saussure Democratic 1852 (Appointed) Interim appointee elected November 29, 1852.[2]
Successor was not elected to the next term, see below.
Green tickY William F. De Saussure (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
Indiana
(Class 3)
Charles W. Cathcart Democratic 1852 (Appointed) Incumbent retired when elected successor qualified.
New senator elected January 18, 1853.
Democratic hold.
Green tickY John Pettit (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]

Elections leading to the 33rd Congress

In these regular elections, the winners were elected for the term beginning March 4, 1853; ordered by state.

All of the elections involved the Class 2 seats.

State Incumbent Results Candidates
Senator Party Electoral
history
Alabama Jeremiah Clemens Democratic 1849 (Special) Incumbent retired.
Legislature failed to elect.
Democratic loss.
Seat would remain vacant until November 29, 1853, see below.
[data unknown/missing]
Arkansas William K. Sebastian Democratic 1848 (Appointed)
1848 (Special)
Incumbent re-elected in 1853. Green tickY William K. Sebastian (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
Delaware Presley Spruance Whig 1846 or 1847 Incumbent retired.
New senator elected in 1853.
Whig hold.
Georgia Robert M. Charlton Democratic 1852 (Appointed) Unknown if incumbent retired or lost re-election.
New senator elected in 1852.
Democratic hold.
Green tickY Robert Toombs (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
Illinois Stephen A. Douglas Democratic 1846 Incumbent re-elected in 1852.
Iowa George W. Jones Democratic 1848 Incumbent re-elected in 1852.
Kentucky Joseph R. Underwood Whig 1846 or 1847 Incumbent retired.
New senator had already been elected early in 1851.
Know Nothing gain.
Louisiana Solomon W. Downs Democratic 1847 Unknown if incumbent retired or lost re-election.
New senator elected in 1852.
Whig gain.
Green tickY Judah P. Benjamin (Whig)
[data unknown/missing]
Maine James W. Bradbury Democratic 1846 Incumbent retired.
Legislature failed to elect.
Democratic loss.
Seat would remain vacant until 1854.
[data unknown/missing]
Massachusetts John Davis Whig 1835
1841 (Resigned)
1845 (Special)
1847
Incumbent retired.
New senator elected in 1853.
Whig hold.
Green tickY Edward Everett (Whig)
[data unknown/missing]
Michigan Alpheus Felch Democratic 1847 Incumbent retired.
New senator elected in 1853.
Democratic hold.
Mississippi Walker Brooke Whig 1852 (Special) Incumbent retired.
Legislature failed to elect.
Whig loss.
Seat would remain vacant until 1854.
[data unknown/missing]
New Hampshire John P. Hale Free Soil 1846 Incumbent lost re-election.
New senator elected in 1852.
Democratic gain.
New Jersey Jacob W. Miller Whig 1841
1846
Unknown if incumbent retired or lost re-election.
New senator elected in 1852 or 1853.
Democratic gain.
North Carolina Willie Mangum Whig 1830
1836 (Resigned)
1840 (Special)
1841
Incumbent lost re-election.
Leglislature failed to elect.
Whig loss.
Seat would remain vacant until 1854.
Willie Mangum (Whig)
[data unknown/missing]
Rhode Island John Hopkins Clarke Whig 1846 or 1847 Unknown if incumbent retired or lost re-election.
Leglislature failed to elect.
Whig loss.
Seat would remain vacant until July 20, 1853, see below.
[data unknown/missing]
South Carolina William F. De Saussure Democratic 1852 (Appointed)
1852 (Special)
Unknown if incumbent retired or lost re-election.
New senator elected in 1852 or 1853.
Democratic hold.
Green tickY Josiah J. Evans (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
Tennessee John Bell Whig 1847 Incumbent re-elected in 1853.
Texas Sam Houston Democratic 1846
1847
Incumbent re-elected in 1853.
Virginia Robert M. T. Hunter Democratic 1846 Incumbent re-elected in 1852.

Elections during the 33rd Congress

In these elections, the winners were elected in 1853 on or after March 4; ordered by date.

State Incumbent Results Candidates
Senator Party Electoral history
New Jersey
(Class 1)
Robert F. Stockton Democratic 1851 Incumbent resigned January 10, 1853 to become president of the Delaware and Raritan Canal Company.
New senator elected March 4, 1853.
Democratic hold.
Rhode Island
(Class 2)
Vacant Legislature had failed to elect.
New senator elected July 20, 1853.
Democratic gain.
Green tickY Philip Allen (Democratic)
[data unknown/missing]
Alabama
(Class 2)
Vacant Legislature had failed to elect.
New senator elected November 29, 1853.
Democratic gain.
Louisiana
(Class 3)
Pierre Soulé Democratic 1847 (Special)
1847 (Left office)
1848
Incumbent resigned to become U.S. Minister to Spain.
New senator elected December 5, 1853.
Democratic hold.
Alabama
(Class 3)
Benjamin Fitzpatrick Democratic 1848 (Appointed)
1849 (Elected successor qualified)
1853 (Appointed)
Interim appointee elected December 12, 1853.[13]

Alabama

Alabama (Regular)

The legislature had failed to elect a senator for the other seat, previously held by Democrat Jeremiah Clemens. On November 28, 1853, Democrat Clement Claiborne Clay was elected late to the seat.[11]

Alabama (Special, Class 3)

On December 20, 1852, Democrat William R. King resigned due to poor health. On January 14, 1853, Democrat Benjamin Fitzpatrick was appointed to continue the term, and he was elected November 28, 1853 to finish the term.[13][11]

Arkansas

Democratic senator William K. Sebastian had been appointed May 12, 1848 to continue the term, to which he was elected later that year to finish.

Sebastian was re-elected to a full term in 1853.

California (Special)

The California legislature had failed to elect a successor to Democrat John C. Frémont in time for the 1851 beginning of the class 1 term.

In fact, this time it took eight ballots for Democrat John B. Weller (71 votes, 80.7%) to be elected January 30, 1852 over Whig Pierson B. Reading (17 votes, 19.3%).[1]

Connecticut (Special)

Senator Isaac Toucey

The Connecticut legislature had failed to elect a senator for the term beginning in 1851. Democrat Isaac Toucey was elected in May 1852 to finish the term.

Delaware

First-term Whig Presley Spruance retired and Whig former senator John M. Clayton was elected January 12, 1853.

Clayton received 17 votes and there were 13 blank ballots cast.[3]

Georgia

Second-term Whig John M. Berrien resigned May 28, 1852 and Democrat Robert M. Charlton was appointed May 31, 1852 to finish the term.

Democrat Robert Toombs was elected in 1852 and would serve through re-election in 1858 and until he withdrew in 1861.

Illinois

Two-term Democrat Stephen A. Douglas was re-elected January 5, 1853. He would be re-elected in 1859 and serve until his 1861 death.

Indiana (Special)

Senator John Pettit

First term Democrat James Whitcomb died December 4, 1852 and Democrat Charles W. Cathcart was appointed December 6, 1852, pending a special election to finish the term that would end in 1855.

Democrat John Pettit won the January 18, 1853 election.

Iowa

First-term Democrat George Wallace Jones was re-elected to a second term.

He received the Democratic nomination on December 20, 1852 by the narrowest of margins: 30 to 29 votes.[16] The general election was held the next day, December 21, in which Jones easily won.

Kentucky

One-term Whig Joseph R. Underwood retired from the class 2 seat and the Know Nothing Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky John Burton Thompson had already been elected early, December 15, 1851, far in advance of the 1853 term.

Louisiana

Louisiana (Regular)

Democrat Solomon W. Downs lost re-election to Whig businessman Judah P. Benjamin in January 1852. Some Whig newspapers thought Benjamin too young and inexperienced at forty, despite his undoubted talent, but the Whig legislative caucus selected him on the second ballot, and he was elected by the legislature.[17]

Louisiana (Special)

Senator John Slidell

First-term Democrat Pierre Soulé was appointed U.S. Minister to Spain and resigned April 11, 1853.

Former-Democratic congressman and diplomat John Slidell was elected April 28, 1853.

Slidell would be re-elected in 1858 and serve until he withdrew in 1861.

Maine

First-term Democrat James W. Bradbury retired and the Maine legislature failed to elect his replacement until long after the new Congress began. It wasn't until 1854 that a new senator would be elected.

Massachusetts

Long-time senator Whig John Davis retired. Whig U.S. Secretary of State and former Governor of Massachusetts Edward Everett was elected in 1853.

Everett was resign just one year into his term due to his distaste dealing with the politics of slavery and abolition.

Michigan

First-term Democrat Alpheus Felch retired. Fellow Democratic congressman Charles E. Stuart was elected January 11, 1853, over Whig Mayor of Detroit Zachariah Chandler.

Vote for U.S. senator in the Michigan House of Representatives[18]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Charles E. Stuart 49 69.0
Whig Zachariah Chandler 21 29.6
Unknown Hovey K. Clarke 1 1.4
Vote for U.S. senator in the Michigan Senate[19]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Charles E. Stuart 24 77.4
Whig Zachariah Chandler 7 22.6

Stuart only served one term, retiring in 1859. Chandler, meanwhile, would be elected to the other seat and serve for three terms.

Mississippi

Mississippi (Special, Class 1)

Incumbent Democrat Jefferson Davis resigned in 1851 to run for Governor of Mississippi. Democrat John J. McRae was appointed December 1, 1851 to continue Davis's term, pending a special election. Democrat Stephen Adams won the March 17, 1852 special election to finish the term that would continue until 1857.

Mississippi (Special, Class 2)

Incumbent Democrat Henry S. Foote resigned January 8, 1852 to become Governor of Mississippi. Whig Walker Brooke was elected February 18, 1852 to finish the term that would end the following year.

Mississippi (Regular)

Brooke was not a candidate to the next term.

The Mississippi legislature failed to elect a replacement for Brooke, and the seat remained vacant until early 1854.

New Hampshire

Free Soil senator John P. Hale ran for U.S. President, coming in third place in the popular vote, but failing to win any states. He lost to the Democratic fellow-New Hampshire senator Franklin Pierce. He then lost re-election to his senate seat when Democrats took over the New Hampshire legislature in 1852 state elections.

Democratic former-senator Charles G. Atherton was returned to the Senate in Hale's place on November 25, 1852.

Vote for U.S. senator in the New Hampshire House of Representatives[20]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Charles G. Atherton 148 55.2
Unknown Ira Perley 81 30.2
Unknown John Preston 27 10.1
Democratic State senator John S. Wells 4 1.5
Free Soil John P. Hale (Incumbent) 4 1.5
Whig Ichabod Goodwin 1 0.4
Unknown Moses A. Cartland 1 0.4
Unknown Joseph E. Bennett 1 0.4
Democratic Charles H. Peaslee 1 0.4
Vote for U.S. senator in the New Hampshire Senate[21]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Charles G. Atherton 10 83.3
Unknown Ira Perley 1 8.3
Unknown John Preston 1 8.3

Atherton died from pulmonary tuberculosis in the first year of his term.

After Republicans retook the New Hampshire legislature in 1854, Hale was re-elected to finish the term.

New Jersey

New Jersey (Regular)

Two-term Whig Jacob W. Miller lost re-election to Democratic former-Congressman William Wright.

Vote for U.S. senator in joint session of the New Jersey legislature[6]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic William Wright 48 62.3
Whig Jacob W. Miller (Incumbent) 29 37.7

Wright would lost re-election in 1859 but be returned to the Senate in 1863.

New Jersey (Special)

First-term Democrat Robert F. Stockton resigned from the Class 1 seat January 10, 1853 to become President of the Delaware and Raritan Canal Company.

Democrat John Renshaw Thomson was elected February 11, 1853 over Whig former-senator William L. Dayton to finish the term.

Vote for U.S. senator in joint session of the New Jersey legislature[10]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic John Renshaw Thomson 47 64.4
Whig William L. Dayton 26 35.6

Thomson would be re-elected in 1857 to a full term and serve until his death in 1862.

North Carolina

Long-time Whig Willie Mangum was a candidate for re-election. Although Democratic former-congressman James C. Dobbin was a top choice of the North Carolina Legislature, no candidate received a majority of votes in either house, so the seat was left unfilled.[22]

The seat would remain vacant until a 1854 special election.

Dobbin would then be appointed U.S. Secretary of the Navy and Magnum retired from public service.

Rhode Island

Senator Philip Allen

The Rhode Island General Assembly failed to elect, so first-term Whig John Hopkins Clarke thereby lost re-election.

After the term began, Democrat Philip Allen was elected July 20, 1853, to fill the seat. Allen would serve only one term, retiring in 1859.

South Carolina

Democrat Robert Rhett resigned May 7, 1852 and Democratic judge of the chancery court William F. De Saussure was appointed May 10, 1852 to continue the term, pending a special election. The term would end in March 1853, so there was an election to finish the term and an election to the next term.

South Carolina (Special)

De Saussure was elected November 29, 1852, just to finish the term.[23]

South Carolina (Regular)

Democrat Josiah J. Evans was elected December 1, 1852 on the fourth ballot to the next term.[24]

Tennessee

John Bell

First-term Whig John Bell was re-elected October 29, 1853 on the 49th ballot.

Bell would fall out of favor with the Tennessee legislature over the sectionalism that was rife in the late 1850s and lost their vote for re-election.

Texas

Senator Sam Houston

Two-term Democrat Sam Houston -- a Texas founder who had served as senator since statehood -- was re-elected January 15, 1853.

Houston would retire at the end of this term in 1859, and be replaced by John Hemphill.

Virginia

First-term Democrat Robert M. T. Hunter was re-elected January 22, 1852.

Hunter would be re-elected again in 1858 and serve until his 1861 expulsion.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Appointee elected
  2. ^ a b c Average vote in both houses
  1. ^ a b c Journal of the Proceedings of the Assembly (PDF). p. 132.
  2. ^ Byrd & Wolff, p. 164.
  3. ^ a b Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Delaware (PDF). Dover, Delaware. 1853. p. 49.
  4. ^ a b Journal of the Senate of the Eighteenth General Assembly, of the State of Illinois Convened January 3, 1853. Springfield, Illinois: Lanphier & Walker, Printers. 1853. p. 24-25.
  5. ^ Journal of the House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Kentucky, November 3, 1851 - January 9, 1852. Frankfort, Kentucky: Albert G. Hodges. 1851. p. 264.
  6. ^ a b Journal of the Ninth Senate of the State of New Jersey being the Seventy-seventh Session of The Legislature. Freehold, New Jersey: Bernard Connolly. 1853. p. 727-728. hdl:2027/njp.32101064301250.
  7. ^ a b Senate Journal of the First Session of the Thirtitieth General Assembly of the State of Tennessee which convened at Nashville, on the First Monday in October, A.D. 1853. Nashville, Tennessee: Nashville Union and American Steam Press. 1854. p. 125.
  8. ^ a b Journals of the House of Representatives of the State of Texas, Fourth Legislature--Extra Session (PDF). Austin, Texas: J.W. Hampton -- State printer. 1853. p. 92.
  9. ^ a b Journal of the House of Delegates of the State of Virginia for the Session of 1852. Richmond, Virginia: William F. Ritchie, Public Printer. 1852. p. 73.
  10. ^ a b Journal of the Ninth Senate of the State of New Jersey being the Seventy-seventh Session of The Legislature. Freehold, New Jersey: Bernard Connolly. 1853. p. 739-740. hdl:2027/njp.32101064301250.
  11. ^ a b c d e f Journal of the Senate of the State of Alabama. p. 82-83.
  12. ^ a b Journal and Official Documents of the House of Representatives of the State of Louisiana. New Orleans, Louisiana: Emile La Sere, State Printer. 1853. p. 231.
  13. ^ a b Byrd & Wolff, p. 76.
  14. ^ Journal of the Senate of the State of Connecticut, May session 1852, pages 41-42.
  15. ^ "Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Connecticut (May session 1852)". 1852. pp. 54, 58.
  16. ^ Clark, p. 56.
  17. ^ Butler, Pierce (1908). Judah P. Benjamin. American Crisis Biographies. Philadelphia: George W. Jacobs & Company. pp. 99-100. OCLC 664335.
  18. ^ Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of Michigan. 1853. Lansing, Michigan: Geo. W. Peck, Printer to the State. 1853. p. 48-50.
  19. ^ Journal of the Senate of the State of Michigan. 1853. Lansing, Michigan: Geo. W. Peck, Printer to the State. 1853. p. 31-32.
  20. ^ Journal of the House of Representatives of the State of New Hampshire, November Session, 1852. Concord, New Hampshire: Butterfield & Hill, State Printers. 1853. p. 55-56. hdl:2027/chi.095661744.
  21. ^ Journal of the Honorable Senate of the State of New Hampshire, November Session, 1852. Concord, New Hampshire: Butterfield & Hill, State Printers. 1853. p. 37-38. hdl:2027/chi.095661744.
  22. ^ See, e.g., "Journals of the Senate and House of Commons of the General Assembly of North-Carolina at its session in 1852". digital.ncdcr.gov. p. 769. Retrieved 2020.
  23. ^ Journal of the Senate of the State of South Carolina being the Extra and Annual Sessions of 1852. Columbia, South Carolina: Johnston & Cavis, Printers to the Senate. 1852. p. 64. hdl:2027/nyp.33433010016032.
  24. ^ Journal of the Senate of the State of South Carolina being the Extra and Annual Sessions of 1852. Columbia, South Carolina: Johnston & Cavis, Printers to the Senate. 1852. p. 77. hdl:2027/nyp.33433010016032.

References


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