Alexander Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton ( * January 11, 1757 or 1755 on Nevis, today St. Kitts and Nevis, West Indies; † July 12, 1804 in New York) was a politician and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States.


Hamilton's year of birth is not certain occupied, although the day and month of his birth are considered secured. For both 1755 and 1757, there is evidence. Hamilton himself was always 1757 as his year of birth. Hamilton served in the American War of Independence in the personal staff of George Washington, from 1782 to 1783 he was a member of the Continental Congress.

In 1784 he founded the Bank of New York (now Bank of New York Mellon ), the oldest bank in the United States.

He took part at the Philadelphia Convention to draft a new constitution, which he then defended in the Federalist Papers with John Jay and James Madison. The young lawyer stood out with its conservatism. Thus he advocated the election of the President and senators for life and wanted to commit a strong central government to the states. Hamilton sat down though only with the latter requirement part caused by, but is considered along with James Madison and George Washington as one of the three fathers of the American Constitution. Under the government of Washington, he was from 1789 to 1793, the first Treasury of the United States and contributed greatly to the structure of the banking system and the Navy. To 1791/1792 he founded the Federalist Party.

Hamilton co-founded the New York Manumission Society, which advocated the abolition of slavery and for the rights of African descent population. With this attitude, he made no friends in the slave-holding southern states such as Virginia.

Alexander Hamilton is considered the founder of the American System of Political Economy. He used this name for the first time in 1791 in a document ("A Report on the Subject of Manufactures " ) to Congress. It is based on a social obligation for all participants in an economy, as it is enshrined in the U.S. Constitution. In this system the state creates conditions under which production plants located - can develop - for the good of the company, the employees and the community. Other representatives of the American System of political economy were Henry Charles Carey and Friedrich List.

Hamilton died on July 12, 1804 from a wound he had suffered the day before in a duel with his longtime political rival Aaron Burr. His final resting place is located in the cemetery of Trinity Church in New York City. Hamilton's portrait graces the $ 10 bill today.

The traditional political magazine Atlantic Monthly put him in a 2006 ranking of the hundred most influential Americans of all time in fifth place behind Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Franklin D. Roosevelt.