Throwback Thursday: Voting and elections

In this week’s throwback journey, let’s venture into what elections were like in history. From polling booths to campaign fever to old-school cartooning, dig into these picks available in the photographic archives from The Commons.

Crowd checking the 1931 general election results, Willis Street, Wellington, 1931
Crowd in Willis Street, Wellington, awaiting the results of the 1931 general election, 1931

Photographer: William Hall Raine
Crowd in Willis Street, Wellington, New Zealand, awaiting the results of the 1931 general election, 1931.
Photographic Archive, Alexander Turnbull Library

Eleanor Roosevelt votes in Hyde Park, New York, 11/03/1936

Eleanor Roosevelt votes in Hyde Park, New York, 11/03/1936.

Taking a tea break

Elections in Brisbane, 20 May,1939. Campaign workers taking a tea break.

[American Federation of Musicians, ca. Jan. 1947] (LOC)

Caption from Down Beat: With three tickets in the field, the recent election in Local 802 was the liveliest in many years. This staff photo by Bill Gottlieb shows some of the campaigners in front of the local’s headquarters at 50th and the Avenue of the Americas.

Summer Schedule, 07/24/1947

his cartoon depicts Ohio Senator Robert A. Taft, son of former President William Howard Taft, examining an electoral map of the United States, planning his “summer schedule” with hopes of becoming the next President. Summer is a critical time for candidates to campaign across the nation in preparation for the primaries the following spring. Robert Taft had a poor showing in the Republican primaries, and at the Republican convention the next summer lost the nomination to New York Governor Thomas Dewey.

Presidential Elections, 1844
Bush polling booth, ca. 1950

Presiding officer E. B. Nuderur and poll clerk A. Telford at a bush polling booth, Queensland, Australia. Taken circa 1950.

To join this series, tweet @flickr with your favorite photos, and include the hashtag #ThrowbackThursday. And if you’d rather not tweet, simply include the same hashtag in your Flickr photo title, or tag it with ThrowbackThursday. We can’t wait to see what time period and subjects show up next in pictures. From old scans to new photos of throwback memories, we like them all. In the meantime, you can also find inspiration in The Commons on Flickr.

Last Thursday: Throwback Thursday: Childhood