"No candidates openly campaigned for the presidency in 1796 or even publicly declared their interest in holding the job. Washington had acted that way in 1788 and 1792, and his would-be successors were careful to emulate him. Jefferson remained at Monticello; Adams went home to his farm near Boston. Others conspired on their behalf, typically without consulting them.
"As it turned out, Adams secured votes from 71 of the 139 electors - or one more vote than he needed for the requisite majority - in what was to be the last old-style presidential election. Jefferson was the runner-up with votes from 68 electors, and, as the Constitution then stipulated, he became the Vice President.
"Adams swept the northern states, gaining votes from every elector in New England, New York, and New Jersey. Delaware also went for Adams. Jefferson carried the South and the West, except for votes for Adams from one elector in Virginia and another in North Carolina. The two nascent parties had secured regional bases of support, where they dominated state and local parties as well. The middle states of Pennsylvania and Maryland split their votes and emerged as key political battlegrounds of the future. For the only time in American history, partisan opponents served together as President and Vice President."
-Edward J. Larson, A Magnificent Catastrophe