Thursday, December 4, 2003

Ohio moments

Legislature picked governor in 1848

On Dec. 4, 1848, the 47th General Assembly convened to decide the closest gubernatorial election in Ohio history. It was the only election ever determined by the legislature.

The contested gubernatorial election was between Whig candidate Seabury Ford and Democrat John B. Weller.

It was an explosive time in the nation's history as the debate over slavery raged. Ford was opposed to slavery, while Weller was thought to be a Southern sympathizer.

Ford was declared the winner. But his inauguration was delayed by six weeks while the Legislature, which was evenly split between Whigs and Democrats, examined the returns.

On Jan. 2, 1849, Ford was named governor with 148,756 votes to Weller's 148,445.

Ford was the last Whig governor of Ohio.

Rebecca Goodman

E-mail or call (513) 768-8361

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