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Great Speech of Clay––Bran Bread is Riz! Lithograph attributed to John L. Mager, 1847

This cartoon mocks Henry Clay, a longtime U.S. representative and senator from Kentucky. Clay protested the Mexican War in an 1847 speech published in the New York Tribune. His son Henry Clay Jr., meanwhile, led a Kentucky regiment. Popular depictions of Clay Jr.’s death at Buena Vista made him a national icon of battlefield heroism.

Lithograph published by James Baillie, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress

Great Speech of Clay––Bran Bread is Riz! Lithograph attributed to John L. Mager, 1847

War with Mexico - 2

War between the United States and Mexico arose from disputes regarding their international boundary and U.S. attempts to expand its territory into Mexico. After Mexico rejected his offer to purchase its northern region, President James K. Polk sent the U.S. Army into the disputed borderland. There Mexican forces wounded American troops, provoking Congress to declare war. U.S. forces won a major battle at Buena Vista in northeastern Mexico and captured Mexico City in 1847. In the peace settlement, Mexico ceded its northern territory to the United State