Chapter

Legacy of Risk

Lindsey Apple

in The Family Legacy of Henry Clay

Published by University Press of Kentucky

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780813134109
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780813135908 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5810/kentucky/9780813134109.003.0010
Legacy of Risk

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Henry Clay had channeled the gambling spirit of his sons, and himself, into acceptable venues, and the Clays continued to do so. Though gambling continued to entice some members of the family, the Clay saga, or myth, turned the patriarch's gambling into a virtue, even as it provided examples from family history of the dangers of Henry Clay's “fickle goddess.” Sharing the patriarch's enthusiasm for risk, family members made major contributions in the riskiest of professions, the breeding and racing of horses, but also contributed in banking, railroad building, and land development. Later generations entered the professions—law, education, and even the ministry—providing a level of leadership required not just in Washington D.C. but at state and local levels and in the professions.

Keywords: gambling spirit; Clay saga; risk; horses; banking; railroad building; land development; law; education; leadership

Chapter.  9573 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of the Americas

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