Margaret Chase Smith Presidential Campaign Hat, 1964Item 25916 info
Margaret Chase Smith Library
The Republican nomination for President was wide open in 1964. Richard Nixon, who ran in 1960, chose not to run.
The party was split between conservatives and moderates and Smith was a moderate voice with considerable Senate experience.
The Republican establishment did not urge Smith to run, but she said she had received thousands of letters from ordinary people asking her to become a candidate.
She also received numerous hats to "toss in the ring."