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"1,341,587 Social Democratic Voters" (March 8, 1890)

The Social Democratic Party’s breakthrough in the Reichstag elections of February 20, 1890, is trumpeted in this facsimile of the front page of the party’s leading newspaper, Der Sozialdemokrat, on March 8, 1890. By that point, it was known that the SPD had won 20 Reichstag seats in the main elections and a further 17 seats in the run-off ballots held in the intervening weeks. For the first time in its history, the party had garnered more votes – over 1.3 million – than any other party. The central figures hold a banner that reads: “Despite everything, the world is ours!” The title of the poem at the bottom, “The First Act,” conveys the same message: this victory is only “the first act” leading to still greater Socialist triumphs in the future.

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© Bildarchiv Preußischer Kulturbesitz