Guide to the Collection

Collection Summary


This collections consists of campaign pinbacks, ribbons, and press passes collected by Ruth Mehrtens Galvin.

Biographical Sketch

Ruth Mehrtens Galvin was born in 1922 in New Haven, Connecticut, the daughter of Behrend and Paulin Mehrtens. She graduated from Smith College in 1942 and became a journalist, working in many roles at Time Inc., including correspondent, contributing editor, and Boston Bureau Chief from 1960-1966. She married John T. Galvin, a public relations executive, author, and leader of Boston's redevelopment efforts in the 1950s and 1960s. Ruth Galvin died in 2002.

Collection Description

This collection consists of political pins, ribbons, and press passes collected by Ruth Mehrtens Galvin during her career as a journalist. Local, state, and national contests are represented, as are both major political parties. Items were originally housed in two shadowboxes, but were removed due to preservation concerns.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Thomas F. Mulvoy, Jr., October 2008.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Box 1#1
For President Warren G. Harding, 1920.Manufactured by Whitehead & Hoag.Pinback, 2.1 cm diameter.
Box 1#2
For President Harry S. Truman, 1988 reproduction of 1952 pinback.Pinback, 2.8 cm diameter.
Box 1#3
Anderson for President, 1980.Pinback, 4.1 cm diameter.

John B. Anderson (1922-2017), Republican, ran for president in 1980 as an Independent.

Box 1#4
Udall for President, 1976.Pinback, 2.7 cm diameter.

Morris K. Udall (1922-1998), Democrat, ran for president in 1976.

Box 1#5
1964 Press Mass. Democratic State Convention, 1964.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.
Box 1#6
Kennedy, 1968.Pinback, 2.8 cm diameter.

Robert F. Kennedy (1925-1968), Democrat, was assassinated while seeking the presidential nomination in 1968.

Box 1#7
Draft Rockefeller for President, 1968.Pinback, 2 cm diameter.

Nelson A. Rockefeller (1908-1979), Republican, ran for president in 1960, 1964, and 1968. In 1968, liberal Republicans mounted a "draft Rockefeller" movement attempting to swing the nomination away from Richard Nixon.

Box 1#8
Rockefeller, 1960 or 1964.Pinback, 3.1 cm diameter.

Nelson A. Rockefeller (1908-1979), Republican, ran for president in 1960, 1964, and 1968.

Box 1#9
Experience counts vote Nixon Lodge, 1960.Pinback, 2.2 cm diameter.

Richard M. Nixon (1913-1994) and Henry Cabot Lodge (1902-1985), Republicans, ran together in 1960 and lost the presidential election to John F. Kennedy.

Box 1#10
Clinton Gore, 1992.Pinback, 4.3 cm diameter.

Bill Clinton (1946-) and Al Gore (1948-), Democrats, ran in 1992 and 1996, serving two terms in the White House.

Box 1#11
1960 Press LBJ Mass. Democratic State Committee, 1960.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.
Box 1#12
Bob Dole for President Announcement May 14, 1979 Russell, Kansas "Bob & Elizabeth Dole - A great team for America," 1979.Pinback, 7.5 cm diameter.

Robert J. Dole (1923-), Republican, made his second attempt at the presidential nomination in 1980, losing to Ronald Reagan.

Box 1#13
Nixon Now, 1972.Pinback, 2.7 cm diameter.

Richard M. Nixon (1913-1994), Republican, ran for re-election in 1972, winning in a landslide, but resigning from office in August of 1974.

Box 1#14
No Amnesty for Nixon!, 1974.Pinback, 3.1 cm diameter.

After Richard Nixon's resignation, the Ford administration pardoned him, a move which was unpopular in the country.

Box 1#15
Goldwater, 1964.Pinback, 2.5 cm diameter, arrow design.

Barry Goldwater (1909-1998) was the Republican nominee for president in 1964. He lost in a landslide to President Lyndon Johnson.

Box 1#16
I'm a Tory, undated.Pinback, red, 5.7 cm diameter.
Box 1#17
I'm a Patriot, undated.Pinback, blue, 5.7 cm diameter.
Box 1#18
"President Crane 80," 1980.Pinback, 3.1 cm diameter.

Philip M. Crane (1930-2014), Republican, ran against Ronald Reagan for the Republican nomination in 1980.

Box 1#19
President Johnson Press Boston, 27 Oct. 1964.Press pass, 10.1 cm square.

Press pass for Lyndon B. Johnson's campaign appearance on behalf of gubernatorial candidate Francis X. Bellotti at Post Office Square, Boston.

Box 1#20
Official Press Kennedy visit, 1961.Press pass, 5 cm H x 7.5 cm W.

In January 1961, president-elect John F. Kennedy bade his former colleagues farewell at the Massachusetts State House, delivering his "City on a Hill" speech.

Box 1#21
LBJ for the USA Humphrey-Press, 1964.Press pass, 10.1 cm square.

Press pass for the 1964 campaign, the name Ruth Mehrtens added in ink.

Box 1#22
Press Goldwater Rally, 24 Sep. 1964.Blue on yellow ribbon, 15 cm H x 5 cm W.

On this date, Barry Goldwater held a rally at Fenway Park in Boston, challenging President Johnson to a debate.

Box 1#23
Press Republican Pre-Primary State Convention Boston, Mass., June 1966.Gold on orange ribbon, 12.5 cm H x 5 cm W.
Box 1#24
McCormack U.S. Senator, 1962.Pinback, 7.5 cm diameter.

Edward Joseph McCormack, Democrat, ran in a special election in 1962 to fill the Senate seat vacated by John F. Kennedy. McCormack was defeated by Kennedy's brother, Edward M. Kennedy.

Box 1#25
Proudly for Brooke a Creative Republican, [1966?].Pinback, 7.5 cm diameter.

In his 1966 run for United States Senate, Edward W. Brooke (1919-2015) billed himself as a "creative Republican." He defeated Democrat Endicott Peabody, becoming the first African American elected to the Senate since Reconstruction.

Box 1#26
Brooke United States Senator, [1966-1978].Pinback, 2.5 cm diameter.
Box 1#27
[George Cabot] Lodge U.S. Senator, 1962.Pinback, 7.5 cm diameter.

George Cabot Lodge (1927-), Republican, ran unsuccessfully against Edward M. Kennedy for U.S. Senate in 1962, marking the third time the Kennedy and Lodge families had faced off in a Massachusetts election.

Box 1#28
Lodge Press reception, undated.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Undated pinback for a press reception for Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. (1902-1985).

Box 1#29
Draft Lodge for '64, 1964.Pinback, 7.8 cm diameter.

In 1964, an effort was made to draft Ambassador Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. for the Republican presidential nomination. Lodge refused to officially become a candidate, and Barry Goldwater won the nomination.

Box 1#30
Roosevelt Congress, undated.Pinback, 4.5 cm diameter.

Most likely a pinback for Franklin Delano Roosevelt's son James, a six-term Democratic Representative for California's 26th Congressional district, 1955-1965.

Box 1#31
I like Donahue, 1999 or 2001.Pinback, 8.7 cm diameter.

Probably for John J. Donahue, who ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Salem, Massachusetts, in 1999 and 2001.

Box 1#32
Peabody Senator, 1966.Pinback, 3.8 cm diameter.

Endicott Peabody (1920-1997), a Democrat, ran for the United States Senate in 1966, losing to Edward Brooke.

Box 1#33
Peabody Senator, 1966.Pinback, 3.8 cm diameter.

Endicott Peabody (1920-1997), a Democrat, ran for the United States Senate in 1966, losing to Edward Brooke. This pinback features a different photograph than #32.

Box 1#34
Save Boston Dump White, [1981?].Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Kevin H. White (1929-2012) served four terms as mayor of Boston from 1968-1984.

Box 1#35
Mayor Finnegan Boston, 1979 or 1983.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

David I. Finnegan (1941-2015) ran unsuccessfully for mayor of Boston in 1979 and 1983.

Box 1#36
King O'Neill, 1979.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Democrats Edward J. King (1925-2006) and Thomas P. O'Neill III (1944-) served as Massachusetts Governor and Lieutenant Governor from 1979-1983.

Box 1#37
Larry Curtis more than a name, 1952.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Republican Laurence Curtis (1893-1989) served as U.S. Representative from Massachusetts' 10th District from 1953-1963.

Box 1#38
"Sherlock Holmes for Guv'nor The logical candidate," undated.Pinback, 3.6 cm diameter.
Box 1#39
Democrat Collins for U.S. Senator, [1966?].Pinback, 10 cm diameter.

Possibly John F. Collins (1919-1995), mayor of Boston, who ran for U.S. Senate in 1966, losing to Endicott Peabody.

Box 1#40
Margaret M. Heckler for Congress, [1966?].Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Republican Margaret Heckler (1931-2018) served as U.S. Representative from Massachusetts' 10th District from 1967-1983.

Box 1#41
Vote Bellotti Lt. Governor, [1962].Pinback, 7.5 cm diameter.

Democrat Francis X. Bellotti (1923-) served as Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts under Endicott Peabody from 1963-1965.

Box 1#42
Statewise...Sargent Lieutenant Governor, 1966.Pinback, 7.5 cm diameter.

Republican Francis W. Sargent (1915-1998) served as Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts from 1967-1971.

Box 1#43
Put Sarge in Charge, 1966.Pinback, 2.3 cm diameter.

Republican Francis W. Sargent (1915-1998) served as Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts from 1967-1971.

Box 1#44
"Erin Go Bragh" Senator William Michael Bulger, [1970s].Pinback, 3.6 cm diameter.

St. Patrick's Day pinback for William Bulger (1934-), a Democrat who served in the Massachusetts Senate from 1971-1996.

Box 1#45
Pete Grannis for Assembly, undated.Pinback, 3.7 cm diameter.

Alexander B. "Pete" Grannis (1942-) served as a member of the New York State Assembly from 1975-2007, representing the 68th and 65th districts.

Box 1#46
Orlandi register of probate, 1978.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Onorato Roland Orlandi (1936-2004), lawyer and Democratic lawmaker from Boston, Massachusetts, ran for Register of Probate in 1978, losing to James Michael Connolly.

Box 1#47
Sherry Huber Governor, 1982.Pinback, 5.5 cm diameter.

Republican Sherry F. Huber (1938-) was the first woman ever to run for Governor of Maine from the Republican Party, finishing second in the primary to Charles Cragin.

Preferred Citation

Ruth Mehrtens Galvin campaign memorabilia, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Access Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in ABIGAIL, the online catalog of the Massachusetts Historical Society. Researchers desiring materials about related persons, organizations, or subjects should search the catalog using these headings.


Democratic Party (U.S.)--Artifacts.
Galvin, Ruth Mehrtens, collector.
Republican Party (U.S. 1854-)--Artifacts.


Campaign buttons--Specimens.
Campaign pin.
Campaign ribbon.
Elections--United States--Artifacts.
Massachusetts--Politics and government--Artifacts.
Political campaigns--Artifacts.
United States--Politics and government--Artifacts.