The True American
CASSIUS Marcellus Clay was a unique and the most picturesque antislavery advocate in Kentucky. Born on a fine Bluegrass plantation in a magnificent old mansion of native granite, gray limestone, and red brick laid in Flemish bond, a son of the largest slaveholder in the state, he espoused the cause of emancipation at an early age, and by the time of his graduation at Yale College he was thoroughly steeped in the doctrines of William Lloyd Garrison.
He was a man of striking appearance and enormous physical strength: tall, handsome, big-boned, broad-shouldered, virile, graceful, with dark flashing eyes, a heavy shock of black hair, and a rich, sonorous voice which resembled that of his distinguished kinsman. He was generous, frank, and polite to all, and even gentle among his friends, in spite of a hot temper that sometimes warped a usually sound judgment.1 Possessed of a restless energy that never flagged, an iron will that rode roughshod over all obstacles, utterly fearless, and fiercely combative when aroused, Clay was eagerly accepted into that small group of emancipationists who had so long been intimidated
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Publication information: Book title: Lincoln and the Bluegrass:Slavery and Civil War in Kentucky. Contributors: William H. Townsend - Author. Publisher: University of Kentucky Press. Place of publication: Lexington, KY. Publication year: 1955. Page number: 99.