The Life of the U.S. Founding Father, Alexander Hamilton
Founding father Alexander Hamilton was an important part of establishing the constitution and the American financial system. Alexander was born out of wedlock but he did not let this be a disadvantage, he studied and worked hard because he was not going to throw away his shot. He realized he could allow it to become a stigma for him and said “ Men give me credit for some genius. All the genius I have lies in this; when I have a subject in hand, I study it profoundly. Day and night it is before me. My ind becomes pervaded with it. Then the effort that I have made is what people are pleased to call the fruit of genius. It is the fruit of labor and thought.”
In 1773 Alexander was enrolled at Kings College, studying his own accelerated course. He started off in small positions but soon became known to the bigger influences of America, such as Washington. He started off as an artillery captain. But when noticed by Washington he became aide de camp for most of the Revolutionary War. Alexander was the New York legislature as well an outstanding attorney. Although he was a small part in the congressional congress he, John Jay and James Madison ended up writing most of the federalist papers. These papers were published in a series of newspaper articles supporting the ratification of the Constitution.
Washington ended up naming him as the first Secretary of the Treasury. In this position he soon layer the blue prints of the financial system. Growing up poor compared to the people he was working with he felt as if he needed a way to fit in with the rest. He met his soon to be wife, Elizabeth Schuyler, when having dinner at the Schuyler mansion in Morristown. The two had eight children. Alexander was known to hold grudges especially when his aspirations were compromised. Alexander had many flaws. In the summer of 1791 he had an unsavory affair that his rivals found out about and held it against him to gain advantage. In January, 1795 he resigned as Secretary of the Treasury. In the summer of 1796 he performed his last service to Washington by constructing his Farewell Address. Then In July 1798, he was appointed Major General and Inspector General of the Army. While married to Eliza, Alexander soon made enemies such as Aaron Burr. Hamilton was a Federalist. Burr was a Republican. There were many other people that would join the one of the two sides and would feel very strongly about their opinions. One of Alexanders sons, Philip, heard George I. Eacker, a New York lawyer and Freemason talking about Alexander and went to stand up for his father. This ended in a tragedy, Eacker challenged Philip to a duel. On November 23, 1801 in Weehawken, New Jersey.
Aaron Burr and Alexander continued their rivalry.The men disagreed repeatedly in the political field which resulted in his death when. After putting his personal affairs in order, Alexander Hamilton met Burr on July 11, 1804, on the New Jersey side of the Hudson River. The two exchanged gunshots, Alexander shouting towards the sky but Burr shooting at Alexander, he fell and then died. He was buried with full military honors in the churchyard at Trinity Wall Street, next to his son Philip. Then Fifty years later, Eliza joined them. Although Alexander had many flaws throughout his career in the government he was an impressive and influential aspect of the U.S. Government. Throughout his time in the public eye being apart of the government Alexander took on many different positions. In 1777 he became lieutenant colonel and assistant to commanding general and then became one of Washington’s most trusted advisors. Alexander helped inspire the first political party, the Federalist Party. Alexander also helped one of his own publicly now enemy, Jefferson, to become the next president. Alexander wrote “Mr. Burr loves nothing but himself—Thinks of nothing but his own aggrandizement—and will be content with nothing short of permanent power in his own hands.” With this statement and many others shows how much hate the two had amongst them. But the hatred among the two was not always there. Before getting into politics Alexander and Burr were friends.
Alexander even begged Burr to help him with the federalist papers but Burr declined his offer. Vice President Burr ran for governor of New York State in 1804, and Hamilton campaigned against him as unworthy. Alexander was among many that were disappointed with the weak national government. He led the Annapolis Convention, which successfully influenced Congress to issue a call for the Philadelphia Convention in order to create a new constitution. In a lengthy speech on June 18, he presented his own idea of what the national government should be. Under his plan, the national government would have an unlimited power over the states. But in the end his plan had little impact on the convention.He he helped reach ratification by writing 51 of the 85 installments of The Federalist Papers which, to this day, are the single most important reference for Constitutional Explanation. Alexander emphasized a strong central government and successfully argued that the implied powers of the Constitution provided the legal authority to fund the national debt, assume states’ debts, and create the government-backed Bank of the United States.these programs were funded by a tariff on imports and later on a tax whiskey. The tax on whiskey shortly resulted in more controversy and people relating it to when the British taxed their tea. The Jay Treaty, which was largely designed by Hamilton in 1794, established a friendly trade relation with Britain, to the chagrin of France and the supporters of the French Revolution. But in the end his passion for law over threw his work in the government and In 1795, he returned to the practice of law in New York. Hamilton continued his legal and business activities in New York City, and was active in ending the legality of the international slave trade.
In 1784, he founded the Bank of New York which became one of the longest operating banks in American history, which stayed in business for over 220 years before it merged with another bank in 2007. Vice President Burr ran for governor of New York State in 1804, and Hamilton campaigned against him as unworthy. With all of his faults Alexander had many more triumphs. In the end Alexander is one of the most important founding fathers. His flaws were made public for everyone to know but he did not let that destroy him. Alexander continued to do what he loved, law. Even though he did not stay in the government field until his death his effects were long lasting until this day, without Alexander and his writing the constitution would not be as important as it now as well as many other important values in the U.S.
Cite this Essay
To export a reference to this article please select a referencing style below