Come quick, Pa — it’s a Republican candidate!

On this day in 1908: William Howard Taft becomes the first Republican presidential candidate ever to campaign in North Carolina. His train makes whistlestops in Statesville, Salisbury, Lexington, High Point and Greensboro before continuing on to Virginia.

Taft will easily defeat Democratic candidate William Jennings Bryan for the presidency, but another 20 years will pass before North Carolina goes Republican, choosing Herbert Hoover over Al Smith.

 

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