The Age of Jackson Podcast
A Podcast on Antebellum America (ca.1812 - ca.1845) hosted by Daniel N. Gullotta and sponsored by Andrew Jackson's Hermitage.
059 Henry Clay, The Man Who Would Be President with James C. Klotter
Charismatic, charming, and one of the best orators of his era, Henry Clay seemed to have it all. He offered a comprehensive plan of change for America, and he directed national affairs as Speaker of the House, as Secretary of State to John Quincy Adams--the man he put in office--and as acknowledged leader of the Whig party. As the broker of the Missouri Compromise and the Compromise of 1850, Henry Clay fought to keep a young nation united when westward expansion and slavery threatened to tear it apart. Yet, despite his talent and achievements, Henry Clay never became president. Three times he received Electoral College votes, twice more he sought his party's nomination, yet each time he was defeated. Alongside fellow senatorial greats Daniel Webster and John C. Calhoun, Clay was in the mix almost every moment from 1824 to 1848. Given his prominence, perhaps the years should be termed not the Jacksonian Era but rather the Age of Clay. James C. Klotter uses new research and offers a more focused, nuanced explanation of Clay's programs and politics in order to answer to the question of why the man they called "The Great Rejected" never won the presidency but did win the accolades of history. Klotter's fresh outlook reveals that the best monument to Henry Clay is the fact that the United States remains one country, one nation, one example of a successful democracy, still working, still changing, still reflecting his spirit. The appeal of Henry Clay and his emphasis on compromise still resonate in a society seeking less partisanship and more efforts at conciliation. ––- James C. Klotter is Professor of History at Georgetown College and State Historian of Kentucky. The prize-winning author, coauthor, or editor of some eighteen books, he was the executive director of the Kentucky Historical Society for many years. --- Support for the Age of Jackson Podcast was provided by Isabelle Laskari, Jared Riddick, John Muller, Julianne Johnson, Laura Lochner, Mark Etherton, Marshall Steinbaum, Martha S. Jones, Michael Gorodiloff, Mitchell Oxford, Richard D. Brown, Rod, Rosa, Stephen Campbell, and Victoria Johnson, as well as Andrew Jackson's Hermitage in Nashville, TN.
058 Presidential Campaigning in the Age of Jackson with Mark R. Cheathem
After the "corrupt bargain" that awarded John Quincy Adams the presidency in 1825, American politics underwent a fundamental shift from deference to participation. This changing tide eventually propelled Andrew Jackson into the White House—twice. But the presidential race that best demonstrated the extent of the changes was that of Martin Van Buren and war hero William Henry Harrison in 1840. Harrison’s campaign was famously marked by sloganeering and spirited rallies. In The Coming of Democracy, Mark R. Cheathem examines the evolution of presidential campaigning from 1824 to 1840. Addressing the roots of early republic cultural politics—from campaign biographies to songs, political cartoons, and public correspondence between candidates and voters—Cheathem asks the reader to consider why such informal political expressions increased so dramatically during the Jacksonian period. What sounded and looked like mere entertainment, he argues, held important political meaning. The extraordinary voter participation rate—over 80 percent—in the 1840 presidential election indicated that both substantive issues and cultural politics drew Americans into the presidential selection process. Drawing on period newspapers, diaries, memoirs, and public and private correspondence, The Coming of Democracy is the first book-length treatment to reveal how presidents and presidential candidates used both old and new forms of cultural politics to woo voters and win elections in the Jacksonian era. This book will appeal to anyone interested in US politics, the Jacksonian/antebellum era, or the presidency. Mark R. Cheathem is a professor of history at Cumberland University, where he is the project director of the Papers of Martin Van Buren. He is the author of Andrew Jackson, Southerner and Andrew Jackson and the Rise of the Democrats. --- The Age of Jackson Podcast is hosted by Daniel N. Gullotta and is sponsored by "Andrew Jackson's Hermitage: Home of the People's President" in Nashvillee, TN: https://thehermitage.com.
057 The Rise of Andrew Jackson with David S. Heidler and Jeanne T. Heidler
The story of Andrew Jackson’s improbable ascent to the White House, centered on the handlers and propagandists who made it possible Andrew Jackson was volatile and prone to violence, and well into his forties his sole claim on the public’s affections derived from his victory in a thirty-minute battle at New Orleans in early 1815. Yet those in his immediate circle believed he was a great man who should be president of the United States. Jackson’s election in 1828 is usually viewed as a result of the expansion of democracy. Historians David and Jeanne Heidler in The Rise of Andrew Jackson: Myth, Manipulation, and the Making of Modern Politicsargue that he actually owed his victory to his closest supporters, who wrote hagiographies of him, founded newspapers to savage his enemies, and built a political network that was always on message. In transforming a difficult man into a paragon of republican virtue, the Jacksonites exploded the old order and created a mode of electioneering th...
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