More on presidential names

Following up on this entry, Ubs writes,

It’s not always an obvious call who counts as a “major nominee”, particularly in the multi-candidate races and in the early elections before the 12th Amendment.

I’m counting three candidates in 1912, only Washington in 1792, two candidates in every other race, and no one at all in 1789. In 1856 I’m counting Breckenridge but not Douglas, and in 1824 I’m excluding both Crawford and Clay. I think that’s cutting it pretty tight, but even so I still get 106 nominees total, so I have no idea how she gets it down to 105 — especially considering that her “215 years” implies she does count Washington in 1789, and the mention of Strom Thurmond suggests she’s counting him, too, neither of which I count.

Anyway, here’s my figures. First list counts candidates once per election; second list counts them once per person.

James: 11
John: 11
William: 11
George: 7
Thomas: 7
Franklin: 5
3 each: Andrew, Charles, Richard, Stephen
2 each: Abraham, Adlai, Alfred, Benjamin, Dwight, Henry, Herbert, martin, Ronald, Theodore, Ulysses, Winfield
1 each: Albert, Alton, DeWitt, Gerald, Horace, Horatio, Hubert, Lewis, Lyndon, Michael, Robert, Rufus, Rutherford, Samuel, Walter, Warren, Wendell, Zachary
Total: 106

James = 8
John = 8
William = 5
George = 5
Thomas = 3
2 each: Alfred, Charles, Franklin, Winfield
1 each: Abraham, Adlai, Albert, Alton, Andrew, Benjamin, DeWitt, Dwight, Gerald, Henry, Herbert, Horace, Horatio, Hubert, Lewis, Lyndon, Martin, Michael, Richard, Robert, Ronald, Rufus, Rutherford, Samuel, Stephen, Theodore, Ulysses, Walter, Warren, Wendell, Zachary
Total: 68

Either way, her 1/3 figure for James + John + William + George holds with room to spare.

I’m counting Stephen Grover Cleveland (x3), Thomas Woodrow Wilson (x2), and John Calvin Coolidge (x1) by their actual first names, by the way.

Amusing trivia: In 1916 a Thomas-Thomas ticket ran against Charles-Charles.

2 thoughts on “More on presidential names

  1. An interesting question is how the candidates names compare with those of the population. I expect that names that are more common resonate better with the electorate. James, John, William, george and Thomas account for a large proportion of the male members of my family tree.

Comments are closed.