First off lemme say which buttons we’re talking about.
The direct lineage of the buttons as we know it started here:
There wasn’t much of a need for campaign buttons until 1828. That’s when the two party system began in the United States
Other presidential hopefuls helped move this idea along:
In the 1888 election, celluloid was introduced to campaign items.
Then in 1896, the Newark, New Jersey, company, Whitehead and Hoag patented the celluloid button as we know it today.
Well, except we use plastic now instead of celluloid.
Buttons were inexpensive - nearly anyone could collect them.
When buttons were invented, it was something really special to own a printed item especially with colorful graphics.