Alexander Hamilton 1755 (?) - 1804
Detail of an oil
painting by John Trumbull, created post 1804.
Alexander Hamilton was born in 1755 or 1757 and ended his
life in a duel of all outdoor sports in 1804.
He was a smart man and
you can study his picture
on the US $10 bill. You might want to hang on to your tenner as
movement to put Ronald Reagan on the ten bucks bill instead.
Before - Alexander
Hamilton on Ten Dollar Bill
After - Ronald Reagan
on Ten Dollar Bill
Alexander Hamilton in
Alexander Hamilton was one of the
Founding Fathers, meaning one of the gentlemen who came up with the
Constitution of the United States.
A hard worker, Hamilton was also a great administrator
as well as a very practical and action oriented man. Too practical
for some. They argue Hamilton lacked a
philosophical side, which usually balances straight logical thoughts
and promotes emotional intelligence.
In any event, Alexander Hamilton was the first
Secretary of the Treasury of the United States. He held this
position from 1789 until 1795.
Was Alexander Hamilton born in 1755 or in 1757?
The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration
goes with the
year 1757. The Alexander Hamilton Historical Society states
the year 1755. If you can't decide either,
you can flip a coin online.
Hamilton was born on the island of
Nevis in the West Indies, which is located in the Caribbean Sea,
see map below. Today, the official name of the
country is Federation of
and Nevis. As the name indicates, the state consists of two islands.
The capital, Basseterre, is located on St Kitts. The Federation
is an independent member of the Commonwealth.
ALEXANDER HAMILTON WAS BORN ON NEVIS
These islands got creamed by Hurricane Georges in 1998.
Map courtesy of the FCO
island of Nevis today has a population of 46,000.
Alexander Hamilton's father was
Alexander Hamilton's grandfather was
Alexander Hamilton from Ayrshire, Scotland.
Alexander Hamilton's mother was
Fawcett Lavine. She became divorced from her husband, Mr. Lavine, in
1758, some years after Alexander's birth. And those of you who just raised an eyebrow
might be interested in this eyebrow trimmer.
Eyebrow Trimmer ES112P
In 1765, father James Hamilton felt it was time
to abandon the family, and so he did. Mother Rachel died a few years
later, in 1768.
In 1780, Alex married
daughter of General Philip Schuyler.
ELIZABETH SCHUYLER HAMILTON
Oil Painting by Ralph Earl.
New York Historical Society
Elizabeth would became the
mother of eight children. And
here you can marvel at Alex's and Elizabeth's wedding ring.
Wedding Right of the
Columbia University Libraries
In 1801, Alexander Hamilton's son
Philip died in a duel at the same spot
where, in 1804, his father would also catch the final bullet.
And here's the
list of recorded duels fought in Weehawken, NJ.
In 1772, Hamilton was sent to school in
Elizabethtown, NJ. In 1773, he went to
College in New York (
Hamilton was a strong supporter of independence from the British. He backed the
Boston Tea Party
and wrote anonymous pamphlets
for the cause.
In March 1776, Alexander Hamilton became captain in the
Revolutionary Army. It was
Washington himself who made Hamilton lieutenant colonel and private
Later, Alexander Hamilton was ready for fame and glory
and asked Washington to give him a position in the army that could
award him just that. The promotion didn't materialize and in 1781
Hamilton quit the service ranks. Later that same year, however, he was back in the army,
holding the commanding post he so desired.
Together, they fought at
Click image to enlarge
Post War Life
Hamilton settled in Albany, studied, and practiced law.
A little later in 1782, he became an elected member of the Continental Congress. He was
a promoter for the central government.
The year 1783 brought Alexander
Hamilton to NYC where he
continued to practice law. He became a delegate of New York at the
Constitutional Convention in 1787 where he argued for unlimited
power for the government over the states.
He was co-signer of the
Alexander Hamilton wrote many political essays under
different pen names. His writings became classics among the political
literature of the United States.
First Secretary of the
Alexander Hamilton was appointed Secretary of the Treasury in 1789.
After Hamilton resigned in 1795, he remained
a valued political adviser to the Washington office and even later
Politically, Alexander Hamilton and
Thomas Jefferson were
working against each other many times.
Hamilton didn't agree much with
President John Adams either. In 1800,
published a nasty little thing called The Public Conduct and
Character of John Adams, Esq., President of the United States.
The Hamilton-Burr Duel
Alexander Hamilton and
Vice President Aaron Burr had hated each other's guts since
quite a while. Aaron Burr then became outraged at something Hamilton
allegedly had said at a dinner party, of all serious events.
When Aaron Burr demanded satisfaction, Alexander
Where did it happen?
The spot is
today's Weehawken, New Jersey.
When did it happen?
On July 11, 1804.
How did it happen?
Aaron Burr aimed real good and,
mortally wounded, Alexander Hamilton went down. Hamilton died the next day, on July 12, 1804, in New York,
NY, and was buried in Trinity Churchyard in
New York City.
THE HAMILTON BURR DUEL
Click to enlarge
This website is dedicated to the Hamilton - Burr duel.
And not only did they track down descendants of both, Hamilton
and Burr, namely Dough Hamilton and
Antonio Burr, they also staged a
re-enactment with the two as the main actors.
Here is more on
Aaron Burr provided by the
New Jersey Historical Society.
Hamilton was fluent in French.
In 1801, Alexander Hamilton co-founded the New York Evening
Post. The paper is still in print but the name switched to
New York Post.
The paper claims,
"At more than 200 years old, it's the oldest
continuously published newspaper in the country."
Find out more about the
Alexander Hamilton Institute for International Trade.
Hamilton was co-founder of the
Here is more Alexander Hamilton
info from the
Hamilton Historical Society.
You can read
The Federalist Paper by Alexander Hamilton
online and free.