• Early 20th Century Socialist Election Documents List Yonkers, NY, Candidates

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    The SOCIALIST PARTY OF AMERICA was a multi-tendency democratic-socialist party in the United States, formed in 1901 by a merger between the three-year-old Social Democratic Party of America and disaffected elements of the Socialist Party, which had split from the organization in 1899.  The party drew significant support from a number of groups, including trade unionists, progressive social reformers, populist farmers and immigrant communities. The party’s presidential candidate, Eugene V. Debs, twice won over 900,000 votes (1912 and 1920) and the party elected two United States Representatives (Victor L. Berger and Meyer London), dozens of state legislators and more than a hundred mayors and countless other officials.

    Yonkers is the fourth largest city in New York State and was a manufacturing hub on the Hudson River until the mid-twentieth century when factories began to move out.

    The Socialist Party was active in Yonkers in the early part of the 20th century.  In 1906, shortly after the creation of the Party as a merged organization, candidates in Yonkers were seeking election to many public offices as evidenced by the three certificates of nomination offered here.  

    8 ¼” x 13 ½” the three certificates lists the names and offices sought.  In the race for Alderman of wards 1, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 7, Herman Boss, Andrew Poulsen, Ernest Vogel (later records list him as comptroller of the city), Fred Cassens, Frank Fogard (also the presiding officer of the Socialist Convention) and William McDonald sought election.  Emil Neppel sought election to the Assembly and Charles Frank sought the office of justice of the peace.

    The certificates contain the party’s emblem of the period and each has been docketed on the verso by City Clerk Geary on October 4th, 1906.

    The certificates are in excellent condition with normal folds, even toning. One certificate has insignificant margin paper loss.  The three documents represent excellent examples of political Americana from an era when the Socialist Party played an active role in American politics, agitating for radical change.

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