On July 11, 1804, in one of the most famous duels in American history, Vice President Aaron Burr fatally shot his long-time political antagonist Alexander Hamilton. Here are five Alexander Hamilton facts they don’t mention in the musical...
Hamilton Was Not a Stranger to Duels Duels back in the day of Hamilton and Burr were seen as a way to have a gentleman’s honor restored after a disagreement or slight. Hamilton had previously challenged no fewer than ten men to duels, including John Adams and James Monroe. None of his previous challenges resulted in going to the dueling field, but his luck ran out when he challenged Burr.
His Brother-in-Law Might Have Changed History John Church, who was married to Hamilton’s sister, had fought a duel with Burr in 1799. Since he was the challenger, he chose the location and the weapons, which were British pistols especially made for dueling. Neither man was injured, however, Church managed to shoot a hole in Burr’s coat. If his aim had been truer, the duel between Hamilton and Burr might never have occurred. Five years later, Hamilton would fall at the same Weehawken battleground, with the same gun in his hand.
He Passed The Bar In Six Months
Hamilton wanted to be a lawyer but never attended law school and left his job as a Washington advisor to study. He studied law with help from his friends, William Paterson and John Jay, who both became Supreme Court Justices later. In 1782, he passed the bar after studying for the exam for about six months.
He Received George Washington’s Final Letter Hamilton served as the right-hand man of General George Washington throughout the Revolutionary War and became the first Secretary of the Treasury. In addition to working for Washington, the two men were friends. In 1799, only two days before he died, Washington wrote to Hamilton praising his plan to set up a national Military Academy. The letter would be George’s very last.
The New York Post Was Founded by Hamilton Thomas Jefferson ran for president against the Federalist incumbent, John Adams, in 1800, and Hamilton wasn’t pleased that Jefferson, who supported state rights and a stricter interpretation of the Constitution, had won. Apparently, Hamilton was a little more than troubled because he spent $10,000 to purchase a newspaper called The New York Evening Post. He retitled it The New York Post and used it to print articles against Jefferson and the Democratic-Republican Party.