When televisions started to fill every home in America, the politicians realized it was an excellent way to get their campaign messages out and to advertise to the voters. Since the 1950s, television has dramatically changed the way campaigns are advertised. This site is all about the presidential campaigns that aired on television. The timeline on the site starts in 1952 and ends in 2004.
So, you can definitely browse these campaign commercials by year, but you can also view them by Type of Commercial or Issue. You’ll find those sections just under the time line. Just click on the button and the menu will expand. You can then choose how you’d like to view it.
You’ll also notice that there is a featured commercial section on the other side of the page and right in the middle of the page is the introduction. The introduction covers the history of how presidential campaigns turned to commercials to reach out to the voters.
I was very intrigued when I clicked on the year 1952 and saw that I had more options of what I wanted to view. You can choose to see the Republican ads, as well as, the Democrat ads. You can even see who won the election.
In the Type of Commercial section, you can view by the different types that were used. The types are: Backfire, Biographical, Children, Commander in Chief, Documentary, Fear and Real People. Each category is defined when you click on it and you can see the commercials that fall into each category.
Issue – This section is set up similarly to the Type section. It’s divided into issues and they are: Civil Rights, Corruption, Cost of Living, Taxes, War and Welfare. Again, you’ll find commercials that serve as examples for each of these.
To me, it is really amazing how the television really altered so many different aspects of our lives and how it has evolved over the years. I found this site to be an interesting bit of history. Check it out!