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“I cannot vote, but can be voted for.” Belva Lockwood, 1884 candidate for President

“I cannot vote, but can be voted for.” Belva Lockwood, presidential candidate. Probably no surprise to those of you who check my blog and FB page, I’m monitoring the commentary and comments regarding Hillary Clinton and her campaign for the presidency of the U.S. Recently I wondered how Belva Lockwood fared in her historic 1884 presidential campaign. Lockwood, a pioneering attorney, author, educator, was the first woman to run an actual campaign and to receive votes. Not surprisingly she was characterized and belittled. (Men wearing shapeless Mother Hubbard dresses marched in  Belva Lockwood Club parades.)  Here are excerpts of 1884 media coverage: “It is said Belva Lockwood has not been kissed for twenty years. She eats onions.” Bismarck Weekly Tribune; “The public is beginning to lose all interest in the fact that Mrs. Lockwood is running for the presidency. It never was an interesting sight to watch a woman run, anyway.” Lowell Citizen; Colonel Belva Lockwood is a candidate for President, but the real issue is, can Belva cook a ‘meal’s vittles’ on a cold stove.’ Atlanta Constitution; Candidate Belva Lockwood is very confident of success. She has already checked at the White House to see if it has closets enough. Philadelphia Call  On election day, Nov. 4, 1884, Belva Lockwood received close to 5,000 votes in the eight states where her name was on the ballot.  She ran again in 1888. The image, “Now Let the Show Go on,” is an illustration in Puck, Sept. 17, 1884. The clown depicts Benjamin F. Butler with a list of other candidates falling out of his pocket. Belva Lockwood is holding a scroll inscribed: “Nomination for Pres. Women’s Right Party.”

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