A print by George Caleb Bingham.
On the day of the election, the rural citizens of Missouri traveled to their local county seats to cast their ballots. Street vendors sold alcohol, and crowds created a festive atmosphere. There was no secret ballot. Voters had to swear on a Bible that they had not voted elsewhere, then announce their choice in a voice vote recorded by the county clerk. In Bingham’s picture, even a drunken man lines up to vote, supported by a companion.