Official State of Iowa Website Here is how you know
State Historical Society of Iowa

Grand National Union Banner, 1860

    Download Image Resource

This banner was produced to promote the Constitutional Unionist Party and its candidates for President and Vice-President in the Election of 1860
Courtesy of Library of Congress, "Grand national union banner for 1860. The candidates and their platform," Currier & Ives, 1860


This banner was produced for the Constitutional Union Party to promote their candidates in the presidential election of 1860. The Constitutional Union Party kept the union of the states at the forefront of their party platform to the exclusion of all other issues. The Constitutional Union Party received 39 electoral votes in the election of 1860.

Source-Dependent Questions

  • As you analyze this image, note the symbols the artist used to surround the main figures of John Bell and Edward Everett. In your opinion, what was the artist's purpose in using those symbols? Why would such symbolism make people want to vote for these candidates?
  • The Constitutional Unionist Party did not take a stand on the issue of slavery. How does this image support or contradict that stance?
  • Based on this image and your knowledge of politics, make a prediction about the success of the Constitutional Union Party in two or three sentences. Use your textbook or a reliable Internet source and research the party. How accurate was your prediction?
  • Compare this banner to Grand Democratic Free Soil Banner. What's similar and what's different? Why would some of the same the symbolism be used for different political parties?

Citation Information 

"Grand national union banner for 1860. The candidates and their platform," Currier & Ives, 1860. Courtesy of Library of Congress