[Lexington? 1827]. 14, [2 blanks] pp. Gathered signatures, with loosening, first and last leaves loose. Untrimmed, generously margined, light toning. Good+.
The tumultuous 1824 presidential election damaged a mortified Clay's reputation. It was a four-way free-for-all; no candidate won an electoral majority (although Andrew Jackson had the plurality of votes). Thus the election was thrown into the House of Representatives, where Clay was pivotal in electing John Quincy Adams. Soon thereafter, Adams appointed Clay his Secretary of State, traditionally a stepping-stone to the presidency. Jackson and others angrily declared that Clay and Adams had entered into a "corrupt bargain," in which Clay had traded votes in exchange for his elevation. Jackson called him "the Judas of the West." [Peterson, The Great Triumvirate 130.]
Clay passionately defends his honor and integrity, thanking his fellow Kentuckians who "have stood by me with a generous constancy and a noble magnanimity," surpassing "the malevolence of my personal and political foes." He recounts the history of that bitter campaign, and demonstrates that his support for Adams was based, not on considerations of personal advancement, but on a disinterested regard for the Nation.
Coleman 3182. Jillson 79. Item #27031