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United States Senate election in New York, 1873


United States Senate election in New York, 1873

The 1873 United States Senate election in New York was held on January 21, 1873, by the New York State Legislature to elect a U.S. Senator (Class 3) to represent the State of New York in the United States Senate.


Republican Roscoe Conkling had been elected in January 1867 to this seat, and his term would expire on March 3, 1873.

At the State election in November 1871, 21 Republicans and 11 Democrats were elected for a two-year term (1872-1873) in the State Senate. In 1872, a faction of the Republican Party opposed the re-election of President Ulysses S. Grant and the Radical Republicans who supported him, and under the name Liberal Republican Party nominated a joint ticket with the Democratic Party. At the State election in November 1872, 91 Republicans, 35 Democrats and 2 Independents were elected for the session of 1873 to the Assembly. The 96th New York State Legislature met from January 7 to May 30, 1873, at Albany, New York.


Republican caucus

The caucus of Republican State legislators met on January 8, State Senator William B. Woodin, of Auburn (25th D.), presided. 18 state senators and 88 assemblymen were present. They re-nominated the incumbent U.S. Senator Conkling unanimously.

Democratic caucus

The caucus of the Democratic State legislators nominated Ex-First Judge of Dutchess County Charles Wheaton.


Roscoe Conkling was the choice of both the Assembly and the State Senate, and was declared elected.

1873 United States Senator election result
Office House Republican Democrat Republican Liberal Republican
U.S. Senator State Senate
(32 members)
Roscoe Conkling 20 Charles Wheaton[1] 5 William M. Evarts 1 Henry R. Selden 1
State Assembly
(128 members)
Roscoe Conkling 92 Charles Wheaton 26



Conkling was re-elected in 1879, and remained in office until May 17, 1881, when he resigned in protest against the distribution of federal patronage in New York by President James A. Garfield without being consulted. The crisis between the Stalwart and the Half-Breed factions of the Republican party arose when the leader of the New Yorker Half-Breeds William H. Robertson was appointed Collector of the Port of New York, a position Conkling wanted to give to one of his Stalwart friends.


  1. ^ Charles Wheaton (1834-1886), lawyer, of Poughkeepsie, First Judge of the Dutchess County Court 1863-67


  • Members of the 43rd United States Congress
  • ALBANY.; Unanimous Nomination of Roscoe Conkling for U.S. Senator in NYT on January 9, 1873
  • ALBANY.; Nomination of Roscoe Conkling as United States Senator in NYT on January 22, 1873
  • The Life and Letters of Roscoe Conkling: Orator, Statesman and Advocate by Alfred R. Conkling (page 449) [gives wrong date for governor's inauguration "January 6", the inauguration happens invariably on January 1; and adds non-existent middle initial "G."]
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