This article is from History.com by Jessica Pearce Rotondi:
Voting by mail can trace its roots to soldiers voting far from home during the Civil War and World War II. By the late 1800s, some states were extending absentee ballots to civilian voters under certain conditions, but it wasn’t until 2000 that Oregon became the first state to move to an all-mail voting system. Here is everything you need to know about the history of absentee voting and vote by mail.
What Does the Constitution Say About Voting?
There is no step-by-step guide to voting in the United States Constitution. Article 1, Section 4 says that it’s up to each state to determine “The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections.” This openness has enabled the voting process in the United States to evolve as the country’s needs have changed.
The Founding Fathers voted by raising their voices—literally. Until the early 19th century, all eligible voters cast their “Viva Voce” (voice vote) in public. While the number of people eligible to vote in that era was low and primarily composed of land-owning white males, turnout hovered around 85 percent, largely due to enticing voting parties held at polling stations.
Read the full article here.