Lincoln and the Bluegrass: Slavery and Civil War in Kentucky

By William H. Townsend | Go to book overview

EIGHT
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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Lincoln and the Bluegrass: Slavery and Civil War in Kentucky
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface vii
  • Contents xi
  • Illustrations xiii
  • One - Athens of the West 1
  • Two - The Lincolns of Fayette 16
  • Three - The Early Todds 25
  • Four - The Little Trader from Hickman Creek 30
  • Five - Mary Ann Todd 46
  • Six - Slavery in the Bluegrass 70
  • Seven - Grist to the Mill 81
  • Eight - The True American 99
  • Nine - The Lincolns Visit Lexington 120
  • Ten - Widow Sprigg and Buena Vista 141
  • Eleven - A House Divided 157
  • Twelve - Milly and Alfred 176
  • Thirteen - The Buried Years 192
  • Fourteen - Storm Clouds 209
  • Fifteen - Rebellion 239
  • Sixteen - Stirring Days in Kentucky 269
  • Seventeen Problems of State and In-Law Trouble 299
  • Eighteen - With Malice Toward None 320
  • Nineteen - Lilac Time 352
  • Bibliographical Notes 359
  • Index 387
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