United States presidential election, 1824

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James Monroe

John Quincy Adams

In the United States presidential election of 1824, John Quincy Adams was elected President on February 9, 1825, after the election was decided by the House of Representatives. The previous few years had seen a one-party government in the United States, as the Federalist Party had dissolved, leaving only the Democratic-Republican Party. In this election, the Democratic-Republican Party splintered as four separate candidates sought the presidency. Such splintering had not yet led to formal party organization, but later the faction led by Andrew Jackson would evolve into the Democratic Party, while the factions led by John Quincy Adams and Henry Clay would become the National Republican Party and later the Whig Party.

This contest was controversial and is notable for being the only election, since the passage of the Twelfth Amendment to have been decided by the House of Representatives, since no candidate had received a majority of the electoral vote. This presidential election was also the only one in which the candidate receiving the most electoral votes did not become president (because a majority, not just a plurality, is required to win). It is also often said to be the first election in which the president did not win the popular vote, although the popular vote was not measured nationwide. At that time, several states did not conduct a popular vote, allowing their state legislature to choose their electors.


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