The Whig Party was one of most powerful political parties of its time between 1834-1856.
The Whig party formed in opposition of Andrew Jackson, who at that time was also known as King Andrew.The name of the Whig in fact came from an English anti-monarchist party.Throughout the Whig party's short history it accomplished many things, and was plagued with problems, but the Whig party left its mark in American History. The actual beginnings of the Whig Party can be traced to 1824 when adherents of John Quincy Adams and Henry Clay joined forces against Andrew Jackson (Whig Party 1).This party would later call itself the National Republican Party.
The National Republican Party gained strength after the election of 1828 in which Jackson won.Other political parties would soon join the National Republican Party to eventually create the Whig party. Another source of recruits was the Anti-Masonic Party particularly strong in New York and Pennsylvania.The main purpose of the Anti-Masonic party was to combat the Masonic power over the judicial and political institutions that they supposedly had.The anti-Masonic party provided a convenient means for younger politicians to get ahead.Among these young politicians were two Whig leaders, William H.
Seward and Thurlow Weed of New York and also Thaddeus Stevens of Pennsylvania."With the addition of two more groups, antinullifacation states' rights Southerners and so-called Democratic Conservatives, who opposed their parties financial policies after 1836 the Whig coalition was complete, but hardly unified" (Gatell 2). In 1836 the Whig party had several candidates run for president, but they were unable to unite under one candidate.The most prominent candidates were Daniel Webster in New England, William Henry Harrison in the Northwest, and Hugh Lawson White in the southwest (Whig Party 1).Democrat Martin Van Buren eventually won the election.