Skip to comments.Jefferson alderman has vast stash of political buttons
Posted on 04/17/2012 11:45:59 AM PDT by afraidfortherepublic
Jefferson - Bill Brandel likes Ike, wants Willkie, knows in his heart Goldwater is right and is cool for Coolidge.
The Jefferson city alderman and retired schoolteacher has amassed a collection of thousands of campaign buttons and memorabilia sporting slogans that resonated with voters, and some that didn't. His hobby began when he was too young to vote, when his grandmother gave him an "I Like Ike" pin back in the 1950s.
Later he worked for Barry Goldwater's failed presidential bid in 1964 and started collecting Goldwater pins - some colored gold emblazoned with the candidate's name in Periodic Table of Elements symbols, Au H2O.
Over the years he acquired more campaign memorabilia and now has items from each presidential election dating back to an 1828 clothing button featuring Andrew Jackson.
"What you're looking for on a pin for value is both president and vice president candidates and the date and names," Brandel said while picking up a small pin featuring Ulysses S. Grant's picture.
Some presidential candidates were well-financed and produced a lot of buttons and promotional items; others ran on shoestring budgets and their items are more rare. Among the most collectible are presidents who were assassinated, such as James Garfield and William McKinley, popular presidents such as Abraham Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt, and candidates whose campaign items are fairly rare, such as Warren Harding and Calvin Coolidge's opponent in 1924, John W. Davis.
Age doesn't necessarily signify value. It's common to find Woodrow Wilson or William Jennings Bryan campaign buttons, and they're not worth much.
His favorite candidate is Fighting Bob La Follette, the governor and U.S. senator from Wisconsin, who ran for president as a Progressive in 1924.
(Excerpt) Read more at jsonline.com ...
Bill Brandel spreads out just a small portion of his political memorabilia collection in the kitchen of his Jefferson home. He has nearly 4,000 campaign buttons, pins and ribbons in his stash, which dates from 1828 to 1996.
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A bearded Lincoln is shown in a framed ferrotype pin from the election of 1864. A ferrotype was an early technique for making a photograph. People could wear these on their suit coats.
I can’t believe that after the Kennedy and King assassinations, someone would print a political button with the word “hate” in it! DemocRATS!
I remember, as a child, who knew nothing of politics, singing on the playground, because it was catchy: “Johnson, Johnson he’s our man; throw Goldwater in the garbage can”. Other than Kennedy’s death, this is my earliest political memory.
My earliest political memory is being sent home from a public playground near our house in California. I think I was 6. There was a giant sand box shaded by a wisteria arbor, and the director come over and sent us home because she was closing the playground for the rest of the day. When I got home, I learned that the reason was that FDR had died.
I was a little upset, wondering what would happen (we were in the middle of WWII.) That was when I learned that another President was ready to step in — Truman. So, everything was going to be OK. This was about the same time that I thought that the words “one nation indivisible” meant one nation INVISIBLE — IOW, the Japs couldn’t see us, so we were safe from the bombers.
My next political memory was going to school in the morning with the election undecided and coming home for lunch to learn that, against all predictions, Truman was re-elected. I was about 9 then.
I was at an event a couple of weeks ago when all three (at the time) presidential candidates were speaking. The button vendors outside were selling buttons “Hate the Vest” (aimed at Santorum). I didn’t see anyone buying them.