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1948 Democratic National Convention

1948 Democratic National Convention
1948 Presidential Election

Truman and Barkley
Date(s) July 12 - July 14
City Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Venue Convention Hall
Presidential nominee Harry Truman of Missouri
Vice Presidential nominee Alben Barkley of Kentucky

The 1948 Democratic National Convention was held at Convention Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from July 12 to July 14, 1948, and resulted in the nominations of President Harry S Truman for a full term and Senator Alben W. Barkley of Kentucky for Vice President in the 1948 presidential election. The convention was televised on the East Coast by CBS and NBC.


  • Dispute over civil rights 1
  • The balloting 2
  • President 3
    • Vice President 3.1
  • External links 4
  • References 5

Dispute over civil rights

To the dismay of party members in the South, the convention adopted a civil rights platform supporting Truman's actions as President. When Minneapolis mayor Hubert Humphrey addressed the convention, he urged the Democratic Party to "get out of the shadow of states' rights and walk forthrightly into the bright sunshine of human rights" All 23 members of the Mississippi delegation, led by Governor Fielding L. Wright and former Governor Hugh L. White, walked out of the assembly.[1] The thirteen members of the Alabama delegation followed, led out by Leven H. Ellis.[2] This was a launching point for Humphrey; he was elected to the United States Senate later that year and to the Vice Presidency in 1964. The rebel delegates later nominated Strom Thurmond as the presidential nominee of the States' Rights Party (Dixiecrats).

The balloting

In the absence of three dozen Southern delegates who walked out of the convention with Thurmond, 947 Democrats voted to nominate Truman as their candidate (against 263 for Senator Richard Russell, Jr. of Georgia).
Presidential Balloting, DNC 1948
Contender Vote
President Harry S. Truman 947.5 (74.81%)
Senator Richard Russell, Jr. 266 (21.00%)
James A. Roe 15 (1.18%)
Paul V. McNutt 2 (0.16%)
Senator Alben W. Barkley 1 (0.07%)
Not Voting 35 (2.76%)


Vice President

U.S. Senator Alben W. Barkley of Kentucky was nominated by acclamation without a roll call vote.

External links

  • 1948 Democratic National Convention at Smithsonian Magazine
  • President Truman's Address to the 1948 Democratic National Convention
  • Hubert Humphrey's Civil Rights Speech (YouTube)


  1. ^ Yasuhiro Katagiri, The Mississippi State Sovereignty Commission: Civil Rights and States' Rights; Jackson: University Press of Mississippi, 2001; p. xxiv.
  2. ^ Pietrusza, David (2011). 1948: Harry Truman's Improbable Victory and the Year That Transformed America. New York, New York: Union Square Press. p. 237.  
Preceded by
Democratic National Conventions Succeeded by

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