In 1797, young Henry Clay arrived in Kentucky from Virginia. From that time forward, he called Lexington his home, married, farmed, practiced law, and famously represented the Bluegrass Region in Frankfort and Washington with tremendous success. This book presents reports, letters and articles dating from 1780 to 1858, which chronicle the evolution of Lexington during Clay's time.
Burton Milward, Jr.'s outstanding anthology of authentic documentary sources about Lexington, Kentucky up to the death of Henry Clay in 1852 presents a treasure of insightful observations about the city known as "The Athens of the West." Visitors both from the east and from abroad testify to the remarkable attributes of a unique city - its exceptional location for natural beauty and rich soil; the visible wealth of the community from industry, trade, and agriculture; its country villas and urban architecture; its manners, hospitality, and elegant social life. Famous personalities make their appearances, as well - Lafayette, Santa Anna, Cassius and Henry Clay. "Fancy could hardly picture a more beautiful location than that of Lexington" is only the beginning of the banquet of agreeable fare in this celebration of an early western city.
- James D. Birchfield, Ph.D.
Curator of Rare Books, retired
The University of Kentucky
"Burton Milward Jr.'s new book is like reading a 19th-century gossip column, full of judgments that turned out to be dead wrong, shortsighted comments, nasty observations, and at least one vendetta-a lot like today. If these writers had had Twitter, there would have been blood. ... In Henry Clay's Lexington, Milward compiles and excerpts letters, journals and articles written about Lexington during Clay's time. No dry historical dust, this."
- Cheryl Truman, review of first edition
"Henry Clay's Lexington was snippy, judgmental, rude, vengeful, fascinating,"
- Lexington Herald-Leader