In 1940, Republicans were anxious to thwart Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s election to an unprecedented third term as U. S. president. War had recently broken out in Europe, and Wendell Willkie’s criticism of the nation’s isolationist policies helped propel him to the presidential nomination on the Republican ticket. The native Hoosier campaigned in Evansville on October 17, riding in a motorcade that began at the train station on Fulton Avenue, winding along Main Street up to Bosse Field. Willkie is seen here standing in the car at left while passing a bar at 1200 N. Main. An estimated 50,000 excited onlookers witnessed the procession, and although he carried Indiana on election day, Willkie lost his bid in an electoral landslide.
FOOTNOTES: We want to thank Patricia Sides, Archivist of Willard Library for contributing this picture that shall increase people’s awareness and appreciation of Evansville’s rich history. If you have any historical pictures of Vanderburgh County or Evansville please contact please contact Patricia Sides, Archivist Willard Library at 812) 425-4309, ext. 114 or e-mail her at www.willard.lib.in.us.