Automatic Voting Machine


votingboothsmithsonian.jpgSmithsonian Image The first "Automatic" Voting Machine was invented in 1892 by Rochester resident Jacob H. Myers. It was intended to replace the hand-tabulated ballots that were used previously. The first machines from Myers' company were used in the 1896 election but were not problem-free. Myers withdrew them in order to perfect the design. This opened the door to a rival machine design from former Myers assistant William P. Davis that would eventually capture the city contract. The competition between the two companies would help drive the acceptance of the machines by keeping the company names in the public eye.

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