From July to November 1880, Republican candidate James A. Garfield staged his presidential campaign from his home. Using this porch as his rostrum, Garfield delivered dozens of speeches - some more than two hours long - to more than 15,000 supporters during the campaign.
Garfield's "Front Porch Campaign" was a new approach. Before 1880, presidential candidates usually did not get personally involved in their own campaigns; they typically let their party's best speakers campaign for them. But since Garfield was one of the best orators of his day, he spoke for himself throughout the campaign - and changed the way future candidates ran for president.
[Background photo caption reads]
James A. Garfield, Ulysses S. Grant, Roscoe Conkling, and Marshall Jewell standing in front of Garfield's front porch in September 1880, after signing the "Treaty of Mentor" which ended a rift in the Republican Party.
[Photo A caption reads] This group of black Civil War veterans from Cleveland came to hear Garfield speak in October 1880.
[Photo B caption reads] The Garfield Band on the front porch, 1880. Music was frequently played during 19th-century election campaigns.