Controversy Surrounding the Panic of 1837
John F. H. Claiborne, a Democrat from Natchez, Mississippi, was aghast to hear the news that rumors were circulating that he supported Henry Clay. He immediately wrote the Vicksburg Register a letter on February 14, 1838 to refute these claims. In his letter Claiborne enumerated the many ways that Clay had threatened the interests of his great state. He is the father of the tariff, Claiborne accused, he is unquestionably the head of the unholy alliance between federalism, fanaticism, and monopoly. Worst of all, Claiborne believed that Clay had contributed to the nation's economic crisis through his alliance with the Bank of Pennsylvania.