1808 Pennsylvania gubernatorial election

The 1808 Pennsylvania gubernatorial election occurred on October 11, 1808. Incumbent governor Thomas McKean, a former Democratic Republican who had faced impeachment by members of his own party during the prior term, was not a candidate. Democratic-Republican candidate Simon Snyder, former Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives defeated Federalist candidate and former U.S. Senator James Ross to become Governor of Pennsylvania. Snyder, with the aid of a supportive press, campaigned as a "New School Democrat" and attempted to ally himself with James Madison. He painted the former McKean administration as elitist and advocated for popular democracy, governmental intervention in the economy, and infrastructural support for Western Pennsylvania counties.[1]

1808 Pennsylvania gubernatorial election

← 1805 October 11, 1808 (1808-10-11) 1811 →
Nominee Simon Snyder James Ross
Party Democratic-Republican Federalist
Popular vote 67,975 39,575
Percentage 60.9% 35.5%

County Results
Snyder:      50-60%      60-70%      70-80%      80-90%
Ross:      40-50%      50-60%      60-70%

Governor before election

Thomas McKean

Elected Governor

Simon Snyder


Pennsylvania gubernatorial election, 1808[1]
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic-Republican Simon Snyder 67,975 60.93
Federalist James Ross 39,575 35.47
Federalist John Spayd* 4,006 3.59
N/A Others 8 0.01
Total votes 111,564 100.00

*Note: Although Spayd ran as a Federalist, Ross was the only Federalist to carry any counties, as shown on the map.


  1. ^ "PA Governor General Election". OurCampaigns. Retrieved July 3, 2012.