Presidential Administrations, James Garfield: Topics in Chronicling America
As the 20th U.S. President, James Garfield served only six and a half months. This guide provides access to material related to the "Garfield's Presidential Administration" in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.
Chronicling America is a searchable digital collection of historic newspaper pages from 1777-1963 sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress.
Included in the website is the Directory of US Newspapers in American Libraries, a searchable index to newspapers published in the United States since 1690, which helps researchers identify what titles exist for a specific place and time, and how to access them.
After a close election, James Abram Garfield took office on March 4, 1881. Shortly after his inauguration, President Garfield challenged Senator Conkling of New York, a leading Stalwart Republican, by appointing Conkling’s arch enemy to run the New York City Customs House. Shortly thereafter, President Garfield was shot by a disgruntled office seeker at the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad Station in Washington, D.C. His fight to survive was covered extensively in the press for eleven weeks before he died on September 19, 1881. Read more about it!
The information in this guide focuses on primary source materials found in the digitized historic newspapers from the digital collection Chronicling America.
The timeline below highlights important dates related to this topic and a section of this guide provides some suggested search strategies for further research in the collection.
March 4, 1881
James A. Garfield is inaugurated as the 20th president of the United States.
Roscoe Conkling resigns from the Senate.
July 2, 1881
President Garfield is shot by Charles Guiteau; the assassination and Garfield's medical status throughout the following months are reported exhaustively in the newspapers.
September 19, 1881
President Garfield dies at a seaside mansion in Elberon, New Jersey.