Lincoln and the Bluegrass: Slavery and Civil War in Kentucky

By William H. Townsend | Go to book overview

FOURTEEN
Storm Clouds

EARLY in January, 1854, Stephen A. Douglas of Illinois reported to the Senate of the United States a bill for the organization of the Territory of Nebraska. Twelve days later Senator Archibald Dixon, the old Whig associate of Robert S. Todd in the Kentucky legislature, now filling out the unexpired term of Henry Clay, startled the country by offering an amendment to the Nebraska Bill which in effect repealed the Missouri Compromise and opened vast areas of the West to slavery.

For four months the halls of Congress rocked in the throes of a bitter, violent debate, then unequaled in the parliamentary annals of the nation. Personal encounters were narrowly averted on the floor as hot accusations and retorts, often couched in fighting language, shot back and forth across the aisles.

"He retreats," said Cutting of New York one day in the House, referring to his colleague, John C. Breckinridge of Lexington, "and escapes, and skulks behind the Senate Bill."

Breckinridge was instantly on his feet. "I ask the gentleman to withdraw that last word," he said sharply.

"I will withdraw nothing," retorted Cutting emphatically.

-209-

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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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