The Craig Fahle Show

Contenders: Victoria Woodhull, Former VP Alben Barkley and Shirley Chisholm

Tuesday, Oct. 06, 2012

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In the 19th century, Victoria Woodhull was many things: a clairvoyant, a businesswoman, an advocate for women’s rights and sexual freedom, and a magnet for media attention and scandal. Her 1872 campaign for president came at a time when most women did not even have the right to vote.

Alben Barkley served in Congress for close to 40 years and was Harry Truman’s vice president from 1948-1952. Though he wanted to be President himself, Barkley never made it to the pinnacle of power. Barkley might have been forgotten except for two things: His nickname, “The Veep” and the remarkable circumstance of his death.

In 1972, Shirley Chisholm launched a spirited campaign for the Democratic nomination. She was the first woman and first African American to run. Declaring herself “unbossed and unbought,” she took on the political establishment as the candidate of “all the people.”

These stories are part of the series "Contenders," portraits of some of America's most original presidential candidates. Produced by Radio Diaries.