Whose Vision of America Won Out—Hamilton’s or Jefferson’s? - HISTORY
Even in death, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton stand in opposition. Background Information Reading Alexander Hamilton. Personal Background Hamilton was born in the West Indies and raised on the Caribbean island of St. The Federalists, led by Alexander Hamilton, who had married into the the Antifederalists, led by Thomas Jefferson, spoke for the rural and southern interests. He recognized the value of a strong central government in foreign relations, but.
He handled letters to Congress, state governors, and the most powerful generals in the Continental Army ; he drafted many of Washington's orders and letters at the latter's direction; he eventually issued orders from Washington over Hamilton's own signature. His letters to the Marquis de Lafayette  and to John Laurensemploying the sentimental literary conventions of the late eighteenth century and alluding to Greek history and mythology,  have been read by Jonathan Ned Katzas revealing a homosocial or perhaps homosexual relationship.
Massey dismisses all speculations on a Laurens-Hamilton relationship as unsubstantiated, describing their friendship as purely platonic camaraderie and placing their correspondence in the context of the flowery penmanship of the time.
Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson
As the war drew nearer to an end, he knew that opportunities for military glory were diminishing. On February 15,Hamilton was reprimanded by Washington after a minor misunderstanding. Although Washington quickly tried to mend their relationship, Hamilton insisted on leaving his staff. He repeatedly asked Washington and others for a field command. Washington demurred, citing the need to appoint men of higher rank. This continued until early Julywhen Hamilton submitted a letter to Washington with his commission enclosed, "thus tacitly threatening to resign if he didn't get his desired command.
Hamilton and his battalions fought bravely and took Redoubt No. The French also fought bravely, suffered heavy casualties, and took Redoubt No.
These actions forced the British surrender of an entire army at Yorktown, Virginiaeffectively ending major military operations in North America. He was appointed in July to the Congress of the Confederation as a New York representative for the term beginning in November He expressed these criticisms in his letter to James Duane dated September 3, In this letter he wrote, "The fundamental defect is a want of power in Congress Under the Articles of Confederation, Congress had no power to collect taxes or to demand money from the states.
This lack of a stable source of funding had made it difficult for the Continental Army both to obtain its necessary provisions and to pay its soldiers. During the war, and for some time after, Congress obtained what funds it could from subsidies from the King of France, from aid requested from the several states which were often unable or unwilling to contributeand from European loans.
James Madison joined Hamilton in influencing Congress to send a delegation to persuade Rhode Island to change its mind. Their report recommending the delegation argued the national government needed not just some level of financial autonomy, but also the ability to make laws that superseded those of the individual states.
Hamilton transmitted a letter arguing that Congress already had the power to tax, since it had the power to fix the sums due from the several states; but Virginia's rescission of its own ratification ended the Rhode Island negotiations.
Most of the army was then posted at NewburghNew York. Those in the army were funding much of their own supplies, and they had not been paid in eight months. Furthermore, after Valley Forgethe Continental officers had been promised in May a pension of half their pay when they were discharged.
The officers had three demands: Congress rejected the proposal. They encouraged MacDougall to continue his aggressive approach, threatening unknown consequences if their demands were not met, and defeated proposals that would have resolved the crisis without establishing general federal taxation: Hamilton wrote Washington to suggest that Hamilton covertly "take direction" of the officers' efforts to secure redress, to secure continental funding but keep the army within the limits of moderation.
In the same month, Congress passed a new measure for a twenty-five-year impost—which Hamilton voted against  —that again required the consent of all the states; it also approved a commutation of the officers' pensions to five years of full pay.
Rhode Island again opposed these provisions, and Hamilton's robust assertions of national prerogatives in his previous letter were widely held to be excessive.
Hamilton vs. Jefferson
When they began to march toward Philadelphia, Congress charged Hamilton and two others with intercepting the mob. The mob arrived in Philadelphia, and the soldiers proceeded to harangue Congress for their pay. The President of the Continental CongressJohn Dickinsonfeared that the Pennsylvania state militia was unreliable, and refused its help.
Hamilton argued that Congress ought to adjourn to Princeton, New Jersey. Congress agreed, and relocated there. This resolution contained many features of the future U.
Constitution, including a strong federal government with the ability to collect taxes and raise an army. It also included the separation of powers into the ExecutiveLegislativeand Judicial branches. He specialized in defending Tories and British subjects, as in Rutgers v. Waddingtonin which he defeated a claim for damages done to a brewery by the Englishmen who held it during the military occupation of New York.
He pleaded for the Mayor's Court to interpret state law consistent with the Treaty of Paris which had ended the Revolutionary War. Long dissatisfied with the weak Articles of Confederation, he played a major leadership role at the Annapolis Convention in He drafted its resolution for a constitutional convention, and in doing so brought one step closer to reality his longtime desire to have a more powerful, more financially independent federal government.
He proposed to have an elected President and elected Senators who would serve for life, contingent upon "good behavior" and subject to removal for corruption or abuse; this idea contributed later to the hostile view of Hamilton as a monarchist sympathizer, held by James Madison. The hereditary interest of the king was so interwoven with that of the nation, and his personal emoluments so great, that he was placed above the danger of being corrupted from abroad Let one executive be appointed for life who dares execute his powers.
It may be said this constitutes as an elective monarchy But by making the executive subject to impeachment, the term 'monarchy' cannot apply This draft had most of the features of the actual Constitution.
In this draft, the Senate was to be elected in proportion to the population, being two-fifths the size of the House, and the President and Senators were to be elected through complex multistage elections, in which chosen electors would elect smaller bodies of electors; they would hold office for life, but were removable for misconduct.
The President would have an absolute veto. The Supreme Court was to have immediate jurisdiction over all lawsuits involving the United States, and state governors were to be appointed by the federal government. He first used the popularity of the Constitution by the masses to compel George Clinton to sign, but was unsuccessful. During the state convention, New Hampshire and Virginia becoming the ninth and tenth states to ratify the Constitution, respectively, had ensured any adjournment would not happen and a compromise would have to be reached.
The Federalist Papers Main article: The Federalist Papers Hamilton recruited John Jay and James Madison to write a series of essays defending the proposed Constitution, now known as The Federalist Papers, and made the largest contribution to that effort, writing 51 of 85 essays published Madison wrote 29, Jay only five. Hamilton supervised the entire project, enlisted the participants, wrote the majority of the essays, and oversaw the publication.
During the project each person was responsible for their areas of expertise.
In response to the call of the House of Representatives for a plan for the "adequate support of public credit," he laid down and supported principles not only of the public economy, but of effective government. Hamilton pointed out that America must have credit for industrial development, commercial activity and the operations of government. It must also have the complete faith and support of the people. There were many who wished to repudiate the national debt or pay only part of it.
Hamilton, however insisted upon full payment and also upon a plan by which the federal government took over the unpaid debts of the states incurred during the Revolution. Hamilton also devised a Bank of the United States, with the right to establish branches in different parts of the country.
He sponsored a national mint, and argued in favor of tariffs, using a version of an "infant industry" argument: These measures -- placing the credit of the federal government on a firm foundation and giving it all the revenues it needed -- encouraged commerce and industry, and created a solid phalanx of businessmen who stood firmly behind the national government.
Jefferson advocated a decentralized agrarian republic. He recognized the value of a strong central government in foreign relations, but he did not want it strong in other respects.
Hamilton's great aim was more efficient organization, whereas Jefferson once said "I am not a friend to a very energetic government. The United States needed both influences. It was the country's good fortune that it had both men and could, in time, fuse and reconcile their philosophies.