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Pin, William McKinley, 1896

Pin, William McKinley, 1896

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In 1896, William McKinley became the Republican presidential nominee in the midst of an economic crisis that had been going on for three years. In response, one of his campaign slogans was a “full dinner pail.” Because miners, factory workers, and other workers carried metal dinner pails (the lunch box of their day), this slogan, promising voters prosperity and a sound economy, particularly targeted the labor vote. McKinley defeated William Jennings Bryan, the Democratic nominee. The recession finally ended in 1897 and, in his re-election campaign of 1900, McKinley revised his slogan to “Four More Years of a Full Dinner Pail. He won easily, again against Bryan.
Object Name
overall: 1/2 in; 1.27 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
Political Campaigns
See more items in
Government, Politics, and Reform
American Democracy: A Great Leap of Faith
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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