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JIM: Mr. Walker calls the election, 1912

He came within 18 votes of predicting total number of votes cast in Adair County in that year, when temperance was the hot button issue

By Jim

A hundred years ago, primary elections in Kentucky were held in early August. In 1912, there was a contentious race on the Democratic ticket between incumbent Harvey Helm of Danville and contender John W. Sullivan of Richmond for the Eighth District congressional seat.

(For the record, the hot button issue of the day was temperance, with each candidate claiming to be a stronger proponent of it than the other.)

Shortly before the August 6th election day, Mr. Walker Bryant of Columbia called the race in Adair County with an amazing degree of accuracy. Reported the News,

"He estimated that 923 votes would be cast in the primary [in Adair County] and that Mr. Helm's majority would be between 500 and 600...There were 941 votes cast [and] Mr. Helm's majority is 573..."

Incumbent Helm handily won the primary, and come November, he easily dispatched the Republican candidate, even carrying staunchly Log Cabin Adair County by over 500 votes. (In the latter election, M. Rey Yarberry garnered 12 ballots in the Elroy precinct, W.A. Coffey one vote in the Egypt precinct, and L.C. Nell one vote in South Columbia.) - Jim

This story was posted on 2012-05-22 11:14:30
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