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The Family Legacy of Henry ClayIn the Shadow of a Kentucky Patriarch$
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Lindsey Apple

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780813134109

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813134109.001.0001

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Going It Alone

Going It Alone

Chapter:
(p.84) Chapter 5 Going It Alone
Source:
The Family Legacy of Henry Clay
Author(s):

Lindsey Apple

Publisher:
University Press of Kentucky
DOI:10.5810/kentucky/9780813134109.003.0006

Dying of tuberculosis, Henry Clay sought again in 1850 to save the Union from dissolution. Friends and enemies recognized the depth of his patriotism only when life itself left no room for his ambition, and family members absorbed his sacrifice and sense of service. His death on June 29, 1852, left the nation and his sons standing alone. When the nation found no architect of compromise Civil War consumed it. His sons fared better but the patriarch's shadow hung heavily over them. Surviving sons tried to restore the Whig Party, served in national and state legislatures, and sought to avoid war, but they constantly asked what Henry Clay would have wanted. No son filled the father's shoes, but Thomas, James, and John were settled in “meaningful work” and making a contribution as their father had so fervently hoped they would.

Keywords:   tuberculosis, Union, patriotism, service, death, Civil War, Whig Party, work, father

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