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Henry Delamar Clayton

Henry DeLamar Clayton achieved prominence as a jurist and as the originator of the CLAYTON ANTITRUST ACT (15 U.S.C.A. § 12 et seq. [1914]).

Clayton was born February 10, 1857, in Barbour County, Alabama. He was a graduate of the University of Alabama, where he received a bachelor of arts degree in 1877 and a bachelor of laws degree in 1878.

After establishing a law firm in Clayton, Alabama, in 1878, Clayton relocated his practice to Eufaula, Alabama, in 1880, and practiced there until 1914.

From 1890 to 1891, Clayton participated in the Alabama General Assembly. He performed the duties of U.S. district attorney for Alabama from 1893 to 1896 before entering the federal government system.

Clayton became a representative in the U.S. House of Representatives in 1897 and served until 1914. From 1911 to 1914 he was the presiding officer of the Judiciary Committee. During his last year in the House, Clayton drafted the Clayton Antitrust Act, which simplified and added provisions to the SHERMAN ANTI-TRUST ACT OF 1890 (15 U.S.C.A. § 1 et seq.), a law that was enacted to prevent the combination of businesses for the purpose of unreasonably restricting free competition.

In 1914 Clayton began the judicial phase of his career and presided as U.S. district judge in Alabama for the next fifteen years.

Clayton died December 21, 1929, in Montgomery, Alabama.


Clayton Act.

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