Alexander Hamilton – One of United States Founding Fathers


Alexander Hamilton

(January 11, 1755 or 1757, Charles Town, Nevis, British West Indies – July 12, 1804, New York City) (aged 47 or 49)
Nationality: United States of America
Category: Scientists, Leaders
Occupation: Political scientists, Politicians
Unique distinction: Primary author of The Federalist Papers, the first United States Secretary of the Treasury
Gender: Male

Quotes: 1. The first duty of society is justice. 2. A powerful, victorious ally is yet another name for master. 3. Liberty is to faction what air is to fire… 4. Distrust naturally creates distrust, and by nothing is good will and kind conduct more speedily changed. 5. Vigor of government is essential to the security of liberty. 6. A national debt, if it is not excessive, will be to us a national blessing. 7. There is a certain enthusiasm in liberty, that makes human nature rise above itself, in acts of bravery and heroism. 8. Constitutions should consist only of general provisions; the reason is that they must necessarily be permanent, and that they cannot calculate for the possible change of things. 9. Learn to think continentally.
Video: Biography

Achievements and contributions:

Social and professional position: Alexander Hamilton was American politician and political theorist, statesman, lawyer.
The main contribution to (what is known): Primary author of The Federalist Papers,  the first United States Secretary of the Treasury and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.
Contributions: Alexander Hamilton  was American politician and political theorist. He was  the first United States Secretary of the Treasury, a Founding Father, economist, and political philosopher.
He was the hero of the American Revolution, the first finance minister of the newly established country, architect of  its monetary system and  implacable opponent of slavery. He also took participation in  the establishment of a national bank, a system of tariffs, and friendly trade relations with Britain.
The chief of staff and secretary to General George Washington during the American Revolution, he was a leader of nationalist forces calling for a new Constitution; he was one of America’s first lawyers, and wrote with John Jay and James Madison the half of the famous Federalist Papers, a primary source for Constitutional interpretation.
While not as famous as Founding Fathers like Ben Franklin or George Washington, Alexander Hamilton played a key role in the early formation of the American government  under President Washington.
He was instrumental in developing the nation’s first political party, the Federalists. In  1880 The Federalist Party  USA formed to support his policies.
Hamilton was the first proponent of what is now called the ‘largest remainder’ system of proportional representation; he proposed it as a means to assign a whole number of seats to each state.
In the troubled times leading to the American Revolution, he wrote articles and pamphlets espousing the colonial cause.
An admirer of British political systems, Hamilton was a nationalist who emphasized strong central government and successfully argued that the implied powers of the Constitution could be used to fund the national debt, assume state debts, and create the government-owned Bank of the United States.
Hamilton believed in a strong central government and a strong national bank, convictions which put him famously at odds with Thomas Jefferson.
Major works: The author of most of the 85 articles of the famous book “The Federalist” (1788), which is considered as a source of interpretation of the US Constitution.

Career and Personal life:

Origin: Hamilton was born in Charlestown, the capital of Nevis Caribbean (now Saint Kitts and Nevis) in the British West Indies. He was the illegitimate son of James Hamilton, a Scotsman, and Rachel Fawcett Lavien, daughter of a French Huguenot physician.
Education: In the Thirteen Colonies after a few months at an academy in New Jersey, he enrolled in King’s College (now Columbia University) in New York., New York City.  Intensely ambitious, he became a serious and successful student, but his studies were interrupted by the brewing revolt against Great Britain. In 1776 he left college without graduating.
Career highlights: When his mother  died in 1768, he began working at the ages of  13 as a clerk in a trading firm in St. Croix.
In 1772 he arrived in the Thirteen Colonies.
He publicly defended the Boston Tea Party, in which Boston colonists destroyed several tea cargoes in defiance of the tea tax.
In March 1776, Hamilton was commissioned a captain in the provincial artillery. He showed conspicuous bravery at the Battle of Trenton and was noticed by George Washington.
In February 1777 Washington invited him to become an aide-de-camp with the rank of lieutenant colonel.
In his four years on Washington’s staff he grew close to the general and was entrusted with his correspondence.
Hamilton was a New York delegate to the Constitutional Convention (1787), and first secretary of the Treasury of the United States (1789–95).
He served in the New York Legislature, and he was the only New Yorker who signed the U.S. Constitution.
Personal life: Eager to connect himself with wealth and influence, Hamilton married Elizabeth, the daughter of General Philip Schuyler, the head of one of New York’s most distinguished families.  He and Elizabeth had eight children.
Hamilton’s political feud with Jefferson’s vice president, Aaron Burr, led to a duel with pistols on July 11, 1804. Hamilton was mortally wounded and died the next day.
Buried, Trinity Churchyard, Manhattan, NY.
Zest: A young Hamilton claimed 1757 as his birth year when he first arrived in the Thirteen Colonies. However, he is also recorded in probate papers, shortly after his mother’s death,  indicating 1755. Hamilton was often approximate about his age in his later life. Image of Alexander Hamilton depicts on the $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $1,000, and modern ten dollar bill,  while among the all figures depicted on the banknotes, only he and Benjamin Franklin  were not a Presidents of the United States.
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