United States House of Representatives elections in Pennsylvania, 1796

← 1794 October 11, 1796 1798 →

All 13 Pennsylvania seats to the United States House of Representatives
  Majority party Minority party
 
Party Democratic-Republican Federalist
Last election 9 4
Seats won 7 6
Seat change Decrease 2 Increase 2

Elections to the United States House of Representatives in Pennsylvania were held on October 11, 1796 for the 5th Congress

Background

Thirteen Representatives (9 Democratic-Republicans and 4 Federalists) had been elected in 1794. One Representative, Daniel Hiester (DR) of the 5th district resigned on July 1, 1796. His seat was vacant at the time of the 1796 election, and was filled in a special election held at the same time.

Congressional districts

Pennsylvania was divided into 12 districts, one of which (the 4th) was a plural district, with 2 Representatives. These districts remained in use until redistricting after the Census of 1800.

The counties that made up the 5th district did not border each other. That district was therefore made up of two separate pieces rather than being a single contiguous entity

Note: Many of these counties covered much larger areas than they do today, having since been divided into numerous counties

Election results

11 incumbents (7 Democratic-Republicans and 4 Federalists) ran for re-election. Frederick Muhlenberg (DR) of the 2nd district did not run for re-election. Of the incumbents who ran for re-election, 9 (5 Democratic-Republicans and 4 Federalists) were re-elected. Overall, 7 Democratic-Republicans and 6 Federalists were elected, a net gain of 2 seats for the Federalists.

1796 United States House election results
District Democratic-Republican Federalist
1st John Swanwick (I) 1,507 51.3% Edward Tilgham 1,432 48.7%
2nd Blair McClenachan 1,182 60.2% Robert Waln[1] 795 39.8%
3rd William Gibbons 1,143 47.1% Richard Thomas 1,282 52.9%
4th
2 seats
Peter Muhlenberg 1,148 13.0% Samuel Sitgreaves (I) 3,752 42.6%
John Richards (I) 1,081 12.3% John Chapman 2,214 25.2%
Robert Lollar 604 6.9%
5th Joseph Hiester[1] 1,538 43.2% George Ege 2,028 56.8%
6th John A. Hanna 898 74.3% John Carson 255 21.1%
Samuel Maclay (I) 56 4.6%
7th John W. Kittera (I) 1,679 95.6%
William Webb 77 4.4%
8th Thomas Hartley (I) 1,502 100%
9th Andrew Gregg (I) 1,141 53.8% James Wallace 168 7.9%
William Irvine 678 32.0% Thomas Kennedy 49 2.3%
Robert Whitehill 86 4.1%
10th David Bard 1,581 45.1% William M. Brown 862 24.6%
Abraham Smith 1,062 30.3%
11th William Findley (I) 2,090 79.3% James Findley 546 20.7%
12th Albert Gallatin (I) 2,522 61.7% John Woods 1,079 26.4%
Thomas Stokely 486 11.9%
5th (special) Joseph Hiester 1,553 43.2% George Ege 2,039 56.8%

Special Elections

George Ege (F) of the 5th district resigned in October, 1797 and was replaced in a special election held October 10, 1797

1797 Special election
District Democratic-Republican Federalist
5th Joseph Hiester 1,259 100%

With Hiester's election, the Democratic-Republicans gained 1 seat, increasing their majority to 8-5

John Swanwick (DR) of the 1st district died on August 1, 1798 and Samuel Sitgreaves (F) of the 4th district resigned on August 29, 1798. Special elections were held in those districts on October 9, 1798, the same day as the elections to the 6th Congress.

1798 Special elections
District Democratic-Republican Federalist
1st Samuel Miles 380 30.5% Robert Waln 866 69.5%
4th Robert Brown 5,109 62.1% Jacob Everly 3,120 37.9%

Both also won election to the 6th Congress. The 1st district changed from Democratic-Republican to Federalist while the 4th district changed from Federalist to Democratic-Republican, leaving no net change in seats for the remainder of the 5th Congress.

References

  • Electoral data are from the Wilkes University Election Statistics Project
  1. ^ a b Elected in subsequent special election