Join me on a tour of Fort Hill, the home of John C Calhoun who served as the 7th vice president. Even more so than many of Harrison and Clay’s other contemporaries, Calhoun leaves a difficult legacy for students of history to consider as his concepts of nullification, states’ rights, and slavery as a ‘positive good’ were key justifications to lead the Southern states to secede and form the Confederacy just over a decade after Calhoun’s death, and Calhoun’s ideas and the events that they inspired continue to have an impact on the present day. The historic site provides great insight into Calhoun’s domestic situation and about the enslaved people whose lives Calhoun held in his hands, both as a slave owner and as a national leader.
Though progressing into his seventh decade of life, Henry Clay was pulled back into the public sphere as the nation’s new president, James K Polk, led the nation into war with Mexico. Despite ill health and personal issues, Clay aimed one more time for the Executive Mansion and instead found himself being called to the Senate once more to prevent the disunion of the nation. Source information for this episode can be found at http://whhpodcast.blubrry.com.
After the defeat in 1828, the pro-Adams camp forms a new political party, the National Republicans, which turns to the willing and eager Henry Clay to lead them against Andrew Jackson and to carry the party banner towards victory in 1832. However, Clay will find that the presidential politics of the Jackson era are not quite as easy to navigate as he might have originally imagined, especially as another new party, the Anti-Masonic Party, threatens to steal away support from Clay and open a path to reelection victory for the incumbent President. Source information for this episode can be found at http://whhpodcast.blubrry.com.
Upon his return to the United States, Harrison found himself beset by both personal and political issues. Through the course of Jackson’s terms in the White House, Harrison would face the death of loved ones and financial strains while at the same time continuing to make a name for himself in the public eye in spite of the efforts of rivals. He would also attempt to straddle both sides of the issue in the growing national debate over slavery. Through the many twists and turns of the 1830s, he would find the path ahead increasingly looking like it might lead to a White House in Washington. Source information for this episode can be found at http://whhpodcast.blubrry.com.