Our County History
by County Historian Marion W. Coplen

At least two times in the history of political elections in Kosciusko county, voters have resorted to the use of the "paster" ballot. This occurred in the Etna Green town election of 1909 and the Warsaw city election of 1925.

In 1909 a number of Republicans in Etna Green were dissatisfied with the nominee of their part for the office of town marshal. This group had ballots printed which substituted the name of Thomas Copeland for marshal instead of the regular nominee. The voter who wished to use this ballot would simply past it over the ballot which he received at the polls--a perfectly legal procedure in Indiana. When the ballots were counted, it was found that Copeland and the Democratic candidate, Orrin Miller, each had 37 votes and the regular Republican candidate had 19. A flip of the coin gave the election to Miller.

In a four-way race in the primary election of 1925, John Hansman was nominated by the Republicans for mayor of Warsaw. He received only 37 per cent of the total vote and defeated his nearest rival by the slim margin of four votes. It was expected that the Democrats would put up a rival candidate, but the legal time for filing of candidacy passed by without such a move on their part.

At the last minute, however, a group of Democrats and disgruntled Republicans "drafted" Dr. A. C. McDonald, a Democrat, to run for the office. As it was too late to get the doctor's name on the regular ballot, paster ballots were prepared which substituted his name for that of Hansman's on the regular Republican ticket. the local Democrat paper, the Warsaw Union (now combined with the Times to form the Times-Union) took up the job of educating the voters in the use of the paster ballot. The slogan was "Don't enter the polls with out your paster ballot."

Hansman carried every precinct except one and defeated McDonald by a vote of 1,728 to 1,087. A big parade and bonfire was held by the supporters of Hansman immediately after the victory was announced.

Warsaw Times-Union Wed. Nov. 5, 1952