More about Alexander Hamilton

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My name is Alexander Hamilton and there’s a million things I actually have done.

Alexander Hamilton, the man on the ten dollar bill, was born in 1755-ish to James Hamilton, a drifting trader, and Rachel Fawcett Lavine, the wife of a German or Danish merchant in St. Croix in the West Indies. The two had Alexander out of wedlock and soon after his birth, James bailed. Babies weren’t really his thing. His mother had to pull it together so naturally she put her son to work when he was 11 years old as a clerk in a counting-house...whatever that is. Three years later she died, so li'l Alexander was essentially on his own. Luckily he was smart and driven, which resulted in a bunch of people getting together and deciding that they better get this kid to college. They sent him to King’s College or what is now known as Columbia University. He was a great student, but his education was interrupted by the American Revolution, in which he fought valiantly alongside the great George Washington. He and George became best friends forever and the two did everything together, including founding the United States of America.

But that’s not all that Hamilton did. He also invented the nation’s financial system, the United States Coast Guard, and The New York Post newspaper. He led the first Treasury Department as a part of George Washington’s first cabinet. He helped promote the Constitutional Convention of 1789 and was one of three authors of the "Federalist Papers". He was a huge fan of the strong central government idea and did everything he could to encourage it. He possessed “streaks of ambition, jealousy, and impulsiveness that led him into disastrous personal clashes” including a fight with George Washington in 1781 (it blew over though because they decided their friendship was more important in the end), an adulterous affair with a 23-year-old girl, whose husband then blackmailed him, and most famously a rivalry with Aaron Burr, who ended up killing Hamilton in a duel. He was a complex man with complex feelings that led him into complex conflicts, which is why his life made such an incredible musical.