Pinback button promoting Woodrow Wilson for president, 1912. The Whitehead and Hoag Co., Newark, New Jersey.
A career academic, Wilson's was an unlikely political rise. Having gained notoriety as a political theorist and historian, and later as Princeton University president, he was tapped by the New Jersey Democratic Party to run for governor. Once in office, his reputation as a reformer made him a contender for the presidential nomination two years later. Prevailing at the convention against entrenched rivals, he entered the most hotly contested presidential race in history. Largely overshadowed by his opponents, President Taft and Ex-President Roosevelt, a divided Republican camp swung the election in his favor, and he won in an electoral landslide (but with only 42% of the popular vote).
An original button from Wilson's historic 1912 campaign.