Reynolds's Political Map of the United States, 1856

1856 Presidential Contest

The 1856 presidential election pitted Democrat James Buchanan against Republican John Fremont and former president Millard Fillmore, who ran for the American Party, or Know-Nothings. Slavery’s expansion was at the center of the contest, with Buchanan claiming that a Republican leader would lead the nation to civil war. Fremont, who condemned the Kansas-Nebraska Act, carried eleven northern states, losing both the popular and electoral vote to Buchanan.

This map, which provides statistical comparisons between slave and free states, was issued to support the Republican platform and candidate.