Clay, Henry

Excellent content 1839 ALS while Kentucky US Senator, has no intention to run for President, will support Whig candidate Wm. Henry Harrison

Price: $1595.00

Description:
(1777-1852) Kentucky US Rep 1811-14, 1815-21, 1823-25, Speaker of the House 1811-14, 1815-20, 1823-25; Senator 1831-42, 1849-52. Secretary of State 1825-29 (JQ Adams), 1832 National Republican & 1844 Whig presidential candidate. Gained fame as "The Great Pacificator" for urging the Missouri Compromise of 1820 and the 1833 Compromise easing the “Nullification Crisis”, and the Compromise of 1850 that temporarily averted Civil War. A planter and slaveholder, he was among the founders and supporters of the American Colonization Society, its president 1836-49. Good 10 x 8 content political content ALS while US Senator, Senate Chamber (Washington), Dec. 30 (?) 1839, to his friend, General T(hos.) C(onn). Flournoy, Georgetown, Kentucky. Clay tells Flournoy, in part: "...I have to say that I have not the remotest thought of my name being run as Candidate for the Presidency. Honor and good faith forbid that. You will have seen... evidence of my wish for the election, and of my intention to support the election of Genl. Harrison." With free franked address leaf with intact red wax seal and typescript. The Whigs held a national convention (their 1st) in Harrisburg, Penna. to select their presidential candidate. It opened Dec. 4, 1839, almost a full year before the election. Leading candidates were Wm. Henry Harrison (an 1824 Clay Ohio presidential elector), Genl. Winfield Scott, and Henry Clay. Clay led on the 1st ballot, but circumstances denied him nomination. The convention came on the heels of a string of Whig electoral losses. Harrison could distance himself from them, but Clay, as the party's philosophical leader, could not. Had the convention been held in the spring, when the economic downturn led to a string of Whig victories, Clay would have had more support. Secondly, convention rules stated that whoever won the majority of a state's delegates would win all the state's votes. This worked against Clay who had solid support in almost all Southern delegations and large minority support in Northern delegations. However, several Southern states whose Whig chapters supported Clay did not attend the convention. As a result, Harrison was nominated. Because Harrison was a Northerner (Ohio resident), the Whigs needed to balance the ticket with a Southerner and sought a Clay supporter to unite the party. The convention found a Southerner who supported Clay throughout the convention: former Senator John Tyler of Virginia. Harrison was elected and his inaugural address supported Clay's American System. Clay expected to have great influence in Harrison's administration. He tried to influence Harrison before and during his brief presidency, especially in expressing his preferences for Cabinet offices and other appointments. Harrison rebuffed him. Their dispute intensified when Harrison named Daniel Webster, Clay's arch-rival for control of the Whig Party, as Secretary of State, and seemed to give Webster supporters highly coveted patronage positions. Harrison's sole concession to Clay was to name his protégé, John J. Crittenden, as Attorney General. Their dispute continued until the president's death.

Condition: Very good, seal tear at top of address leaf
Type:Letter + free franked address leaf






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