In 1887, the Grand Army of the Republic (G.A.R.) held its 11th annual reunion in Wheeling, West Virginia. President Grover Cleveland was unpopular with the G.A.R. because of his vetoes of pension bills and his support for returning battle flags to their states of origin.
During the parade, a banner with Cleveland's likeness was hung in front of the “Wheeling Register” newspaper office. Some of the G.A.R. posts refused to march under the banner, veering off the street and onto the sidewalk. The incident was picked up by newspapers all over the country and became a national political scandal.
Some people criticized the G.A.R. marchers for being disrespectful and unpatriotic, while others defended their actions, saying that the banner was deliberately placed in their path as a political trick and an insult to veterans.
The incident is known as the "Grover Cleveland Banner Incident" and is a reminder of the political divisions that existed in the United States during the late 19th century.