Granite State Stories: Amos Tuck helps to found the Republican Party 

  • Bronze portrait bust of Amos Tuck (1810–79), created by Daniel Chester French, 1911. Courtesy of N.H. Historical Society

Saturday, February 03, 2018

Attorney Amos Tuck was elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives in 1842 as a member of the Democratic Party. He broke with the Democrats over the question of slavery and was formally cast out in 1844.

Despite Democratic opposition, Tuck campaigned around the state as an “Independent Democrat” and was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1846. He served three terms but was unseated in 1852 and returned to New Hampshire.

In October 1853, he convened a secret meeting of the state’s anti-slavery political leaders at Major Blake’s Hotel (now Squamscott House) in Exeter. At the meeting, Tuck proposed combining all of the smaller anti-slavery political parties to form a single, new party, which he named the Republican Party.

Tuck led the New Hampshire delegations to the Republican Party’s national convention in 1860, where he helped nominate Abraham Lincoln.

N.H. Historical Society