“Alexander Hamilton, American” by Richard Brookhiser tells the story of Alexander Hamilton’s journey to the presidency and the influence he had on America. Born in the Caribbean islands to James Hamilton and Rachel Lavein, Hamilton was unlike many of his fellow Founding Fathers in that he did not come from a wealthy, stable home. At a young age Hamilton and his brother were left orphaned after the passing of his mother and the abandonment of his father. When he was just a teenager, a merchant named Nicholas Cruger hired Hamilton as a clerk and quickly noticed his brilliance. Hamilton was exceptionally good at business and mathematics. Though Hamilton loved his work, he dreamed of traveling the world and visiting what is now the United States. With the help of Reverend Hugh Knox and Cruger, Hamilton was able to interview with the president of the College of New Jersey, now known as Princeton University. However, his interview did not go well and he was denied acceptance. After being rejected by the College of New Jersey, Hamilton was granted the liberty of independent study at King’s College in New York City and rapidly progressed through all of his courses. With the aspiration of becoming a doctor, Hamilton enrolled in several science courses but later realized he was more captivated by history and debating.
During the revolutionary war Hamilton produced anonymous pamphlets respectively speaking out against King George III. When Hamilton heard of the battle of Lexington and Concord, he and some college friends began to put together a small, volunteer militia, training young men to fight. Hamilton’s militia knowledge did not go unnoticed and he was appointed as a captain in the Continental Army by March 1776. His excellent work and leadership as a captain caught the eye of General George Washington who then promoted him to the rank of lieutenant-colonel. Washington relied heavily on Hamilton and grew very partial to him in the four years that... [continues]
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