First Democratization Project
The American Antiquarian Society, in partnership with Tufts
University Digital Collections and Archives (DCA), has received
funding from the National
for the Humanities (NEH) to digitize
the Lampi Collection of American Electoral returns. The Electoral
returns span the formative years of American democracy from 1787 - 1825.
Complied by Philip J. Lampi over the past four decades, this is the
richest and most complete set of early American election returns in
existence. Lampi has collected varying amounts of presidential,
congressional, gubernatorial, state executive and state legislative
election returns (much of it down to the county and/or town level) for
all twenty-four states in the Union by 1825. Also among the data are
records of party labels for elections and citations to the sources of the
The project is already under way, thanks to a 2004 NEH grant to AAS. It is
a work in progress but we have already digitized over 14,000 elections
that Lampi had previously tabulated in typed or handwritten form.
AAS has received additional grant funding from NEH through May of 2009 to
tackle the considerably more
complex tasks of processing some 48,000 heretofore-unprocessed source
documents (mostly photocopies of election returns Lampi found in
contemporary newspapers and archival sources), and digitizing
approximately 40 percent of those materials.