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Presidential Election of 1860: A Resource Guide

In a four-way race, Abraham Lincoln won the presidential election of 1860. This guide provides access to digital materials at the Library of Congress, links to external websites, and a print bibliography.


Abraham Lincoln (Republican) won the presidential election of 1860 in a four-way contest. Although Lincoln received less than 40% of the popular vote, he easily won the Electoral College vote over Stephen Douglas (Democrat), John Breckenridge (Southern Democrat), and John Bell (Constitutional Union).

The digital collections of the Library of Congress contain a wide variety of material associated with the presidential election of 1860, including manuscripts, broadsides, prints, political cartoons, sheet music, articles, and government documents. This guide compiles links to digital materials related to the presidential election of 1860 that are available throughout the Library of Congress website. In addition, it provides links to external websites focusing on the 1860 election and a selected bibliography.

1860 Presidential Election Results [1]

Political Party Presidential Nominee VP Nominee Electoral College Popular Vote
Republican Abraham Lincoln Hannibal Hamlin 180 1,865,908
Democratic (Southern) John Breckinridge Joseph Lane 72 848,019
Constitutional Union John Bell Edward Everett 39 590,901
Democratic Stephen Douglas Herschel Johnson 12 1,380,202


1. Presidential Elections, 1789-2008. (Washington, D.C.: CQ Press, 2010), 134, 224.