PrintsOldandRare.com had a copy of an 1864 Illustrated News with Millard Fillmore on the cover.
What was the contemporary judgment on the last Whig President, whose own party refused to nominate him for a term of his own?
One wonders if there isn’t another copy of that newspaper floating around out there, or whether it might be available at the Library of Congress.
Just about a decade later, some people thought Fillmore might be a good nominee for the Democrats, against Lincoln. In a look back in history in the Columbia (Missouri) Daily Tribune, we find this news report out of Fulton, Missouri, repeated by Rudi Keller:
FULTON — Former President Millard Fillmore was a tested leader who would preserve the Union and heal political divisions, Editor John Williams wrote, announcing his preference for the Democratic presidential nomination.
“We have tried him and we know that he will do us justice,” Williams wrote.
The Democratic National Convention was scheduled to begin Aug. 29 at Chicago. Fillmore, 64, was gaining some notice as a potential candidate, but most Democrats were focused on Maj. Gen. George McClellan. Nicknamed “The Young Napoleon,” McClellan was a meticulous officer who thoroughly organized the Army of the Potomac but was relieved of command because of his cautious approach to combat.
Missouri had 22 delegate seats at the convention, with U.S. Rep. William Hall of Randolph County, banker Weston Birch of Howard County and former U.S. Rep. Thomas Price of Cole County included in the delegation.
Williams wrote that while he preferred Fillmore, “McClellan will do — he is a Christian — a soldier and a patriot. Although a war man we believe he would favor peace at once, with the most liberal terms, and on the condition of the Union. If not McClellan, then some other good man…”
Democrats nominated McClellan. Lincoln won.
- A few more details, and other images on the 1853 newspaper, here