The Origin of Machine Vote Tabulation of Elections


Our mother, Anne O'Grady Rivard, had a great-uncle, James M. E. O'Grady, who was the Speaker of the New York State Assembly in 1897 & 1898. He was from Olcott, near Rochester, N.Y., and served in the legislature from 1893-1898. He had an acquaintance, Jacob H. Myers, from Lockport, N.Y., who invented the automatic voting machine. Lockport was where the voting machine was first used in a municipal election, electing a town Supervisor and a Game Constable on April 15, 1892. New York State became the first state to allow the use of machines to replace the paper ballot. In 1894 he introduced a bill, and ushered it to passage as law, to authorize Boards of Supervisors to buy the Myers' automatic voting machine. The voting machines were subsequently manufactured in Jamestown, N.Y. by the A V M Corp. (AVM stood for automatic voting machine.)

James M.E. O'Grady later served one term in the US Congress (1899-1901), and was the President of the Monroe County Bar Association in 1921.