Counting the Votes Electing Washington President in 1789
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Newspaper. Gazette of the United States, Philadelphia, Pa., October 17, 1789. 4 pp., 10 x 16 ¼ in.
A report from the Federalist newspaper, Gazette of the United States, printing proceedings from the Journal of the First Session of the Senate that officially certified Washington’s election as the first President. “The...votes of the Electors for President and Vice President of the United States...were as follows--.” A table then lists Washington and John Adams along with the ten other men to receive votes (and the states that awarded them).
George Washington was the only President to win unanimous approval by the Electoral College with 69 votes. Each elector voted twice (for President and Vice President), and John Adams gained the Vice Presidency with 34 votes. John Jay was a distant third place finisher, with 9 votes. Congress tabulated and announced the official results in on April 6, 1789; this printing reflects the official record in the Senate Journal. The paper went on to report that “Mr. Madison came from the House of Representatives” to request that “the notifications of the election of the President and Vice-president of the United States should be made...in such manner, as the Senate shall be pleased to direct.” Charles Thomson, who had been secretary of the Continental Congress from 1774 to 1789, was commissioned to travel to Mount Vernon and inform Washington of his victory, while Sylvanus Bourne informed Adams.