Since the purpose of Founder of the Day is to shed light on the lesser known Founding Fathers, this is simply a brief overview of the life of Alexander Hamilton. He was a trusted adviser to George Washington and a major player in the American Revolution. It is recommended that you read more about him than is found in this short summary.
Alexander Hamilton was a college student when the American Revolution began.
He gave speeches to anyone who would listen in support of the Patriot's Cause.
When hostilities broke out, Hamilton joined the Continental Army. He quickly rose through the ranks and came to the attention of General Washington. He became one of Washington's most trusted advisers for the rest of his life.
Hamilton served in almost every major battle of the American Revolutionary War. His leadership of troops in battle and his service to Washington played a large role in the patriots victory.
He was sent by New York to the Confederation Congress where he saw the need for a stronger national government. Hamilton thought the Congress needed the power of taxation. After Shay's Rebellion, he wanted federal troops to suppress revolts and be prepared to defend America at any time.
He worked with James Madison to organize the Constitutional Convention.
Although a stronger national government was proposed during this Convention, Hamilton's views were forced into a more centrist position. He was almost unanimously turned down when he recommended Washington be instituted as king. Even so, he supported the Constitution when it was completed and went to work pushing for its ratification.
Hamilton worked with John Jay and Madison to write the Federalist Papers. This series of articles, originally published in New York, were used throughout the states as an argument for ratification.
After the new government was established, Hamilton (upon recommendation from Robert Morris, who was Washington's first choice), was given the position of Secretary of the Treasury. It was in this position that he set many of the precedents that United States' financial system is still based on today.
He also became the leader of the Federalists, one of America's first two political parties. His opposition to the Democratic-Republicans eventually led to the disagreements with Aaron Burr which ended in the famous duel and his death in 1804 at the age of 49.
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