Reeder - John Quincy Adams, not John Adams. Election of 1824.
Nobody won a majority of the electoral college, so it was referred to the House of Represenatives to choose from the top 3 candidates, under the provisions of the 12th ammendment. In 1824, there were 4 candidates who got electoral votes - Andrew Jackson won the most votes in both the popular vote and the electoral college. Before the decision by the House, 4th place Henry Clay publically supported Adams. The 1824 election:
Clinton had very clear majorities in the electoral college in both 1992 and 1996.
The last time a third party candidate carried any states was Wallace, in 1968. Nixon still had a majority. There have been a few electoral votes cast for candidates other than the main two, such as the West Virginia elector who cast a vote for Lloyd Bentsen in 1988.
Another weird aspect of the 1824 election is that William Crawford, who finished third, had suffered a stroke after the general election and was pretty much incapicitated, yet refused to remove his name from consideration.
And there was no conflict over the selection of the VP. John Calhoun won that.
Calhoun was VP under both Adams and most of Jackson’s first term even though he really didn’t like either man.
Thomas Jefferson in 1800 and John Quincy Adams in 1824 were chosen by the House of Representatives because no one man gained a majority of the Electoral College – the only two times that process has had to have been invoked. JQA and Gerald Ford are the only two Presidents never to have been elected by the Electoral College (Jefferson did get a majority in 1804, when he was re-elected).
In the “what the hell else could go wrong” category, there’s the possibility that this year’s election could also end up in the House. It would take an electoral tie for this to happen since Nader has no chance of getting even one electoral vote.