During the 1840s, William Tell Claude wrote a semi-weekly column for a Whig newspaper in Annapolis, Md., probably the Maryland Republican, commenting on local, state, and national affairs. A fiery writer and editor, Claude adopted the quintessentially Whiggish love of internal improvement and public support of private enterprise, and expressed a progressive outlook on a number of contemporary issues, including the abolition of capital punishment and opposition to the "war of conquest" raging in Mexico. Not surprisingly, given that he worked in Maryland, Claude fell silent on the issue of slavery.
During the election of 1848, Claude labored ceaselessly in support of Whig candidates, praising their principles, accomplishments, and experience, and he was unrelenting in his gloating approval of the party's successful presidential candidate, Zachary Taylor. At the same time that he waved the Whig banner, Claude never shrank from attacking the opposition, waving his editorial dagger freely in the direction of the rival Democratic Standard.