Political Family Case 3

A Family on the Campaign Trail

Cleveland-Stevenson ribbon

Adlai II earrings

Adlai III campaign advertisement

The Stevenson family formed an Illinois political dynasty that stretched from Adlai I’s 1874 election to Congress into the 1980s. Few Illinois families have spent more time on the campaign trail. Here you can see campaign items from three different generations of Stevensons. The flier urging voters to elect Adlai Stevenson III to the Illinois House in 1964 is similar to advertisements in contemporary elections, but the ribbon and earrings from Adlai I and Adlai II’s campaigns may seem a bit flamboyant compared to modern campaign items.

Pitcher

Mug

Showpieces such as this Cleveland-Stevenson pitcher were staples of elections in the 1800s, giving middle class supporters items to display proudly in their homes during campaign season. Campaign glassware in the late twentieth century became more utilitarian. Famed cartoonist Bill Mauldin drew the cartoon on this coffee mug from Adlai III’s senate campaign. Mauldin had also created art in support of Adlai II during his presidential bids.

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