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Convention Hall, Interior
Convention Hall, Interior
TitleConvention Hall, Interior
DescriptionPostcard of the interior of the Convention Hall during the National Democratic Convention, July 4, 1900
Historical ArticleThe National Democratic convention opened in the newly-finished and flag-decorated Convention hall in Kansas City, July 4, 1900. William Jennings Bryan was nominated for President of the United States and Adlai Ewing Stevenson, vice-president. Stevenson was the proud grandfather of a 5-month-old baby boy, his name-sake who half a century later would be nominated twice by the Democratic party for the presidency of his country.

Most of the women in the crowd were visitors and not delegates since only a few states had woman's suffrage at the time.

Straw hats, much like the present plastic skimmers worn at conventions today, were much in evident, some hanging on the state standard bearing signs.

Bryan and Stevenson were defeated in the November and William McKinley, the Republican incumbent, was re-elected President, and Theodore Roosevelt, vice-president.

Kansas City Star
August 24, 1968

The 1900 postcard, which appears to be a mass of lines and dots, is a photograph of the Democratic convention held in Kansas City in 1900. Those attending were comfortably dressed in shirt sleeves, summer suits and white shirtwaists. No air conditioning then. Men's straw hats top many of the upright signs designating the state delegations.

Having the convention here at all has been called Kansas City's finest hour. Three months before the meeting was to be held, Convention Hall burned to the ground. Some thought the disaster put an end to the convention here, but not most Kansas Citians.

After almost super-human zeal and efforts by the city fathers, contractors, steel workers, carpenters, brick layers, teamsters and craftsmen of all kinds--even the railroad people who rushed steel girders through by special train--the Convention Hall, on the old Wyandotte site between 12th and 13th, was completed in 90 days.

Delegates began arriving on schedule as the last of the workers left. William Jennings Bryan was selected as presidential candidate, and Kansas City received the plaudits of the world for its accomplishment.

The postcard was published in color by H.C. Leighton, Portland, Me., and was made in Germany. It had not been mailed but was part of my aunt's collection. (She may have been one of those spectators in the balcony.)

Kansas City Times
August 29, 1986

AuthorRay, Mrs. Sam (Mildred)
Item TypePostcard
CollectionMrs. Sam Ray Postcard Collection (SC58)
See finding aid: http://localhistory.kclibrary.org/u?/Local,36981
Local SubjectBuildings
Convention Hall (second)
Democratic National Convention
Digital FormatJPEG
RepositoryMissouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri
RightsReproduction (printing, downloading, or copying) of images from Kansas City Public Library requires permission and payment for the following uses, whether digital or print: publication; reproduction of multiple copies; personal, non-educational purposes; and advertising or commercial purposes. Please order prints or digital files and pay use fees through this website. All images must be properly credited to: "Missouri Valley Special Collections, Kansas City Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri." Images and texts may be reproduced without prior permission only for purposes of temporary, private study, scholarship, or research. Those using these images and texts assume all responsibility for questions of copyright and privacy that may arise.
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