Browse FAQs

What types of browsing are available?
You may browse by state, year, office, jurisdiction, party, election type, and candidate name.

How do I browse for election by office, such as governor?
Click on the + in the Office box on the main page. Once you have selected an office, a list of elections for that office will appear. This page will also provide a defintion of that office, when one is available, and cross references to related offices.

Where are all of the names that start with Mc?
Spelling of names was not standardized at this time. One source may spell a name as "MacDonald," for example, whereas another source refers to that same person as "McDonald." According to cataloguing standards, Mc, Mac, and M' are interchangeable. We have changed all instances of Mc and M' to Mac for consistency and to facilitate browsing of the names. The source may have spelled the name in any of the three ways. Thus, if you are looking for "McDonald," please look under "MacDonald" in the browsing list.

What should I do when I can't find a candidate's name in the browsing list?
The browsing list is updated periodically as we enter more elections. To find a specific name, try an alternative spelling, or search for the name through keyword search.

How do I know whether I am viewing all of the elections for a candidate?
When possible, we have tried to aggregate candidate names when it is obvious that the same person ran in multiple elections throughout the years. Our unit of analysis is the election. This means that a candidate's name will reappear each time that candidate ran for an office. If you are having trouble finding a name, you may want to look for alternative spelling (especially in Pennsylvania, where the English spellings of names have been used instead of the German). If you notice any errors in a name, please contact us and we will look into it.

Why are there only 29 states listed?
Only 29 states/territories existed by 1825.