House of Cards

The home of an immortal political cheater

MarbleheadsingEldgridgecloseup©oganPhoto: Susan Ogan

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lbridge Gerry was a signer of the Declaration of Independence, represented Massachusetts at the Constitutional Convention, and was vice president under James Madison. But he has been immortalized for reorganizing an electoral district in favor of his party while governor in 1812, shaping it somewhat like a salamander to pick up the most possible friendly votes. Hence the term “gerrymandering.” Gerry’s home, now privately owned, still stands.

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Gerrymandering became popular in the South for banning blacks from political representation, until the Voting Rights Act of 1965 banned its use for that purpose.

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