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Alexander Hamilton, a life (2003)

de Willard Sterne Randall

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236185,874 (3.89)1
In the first full, one-volume biography of Alexander Hamilton in more than two decades, award-winning historian Willard Sterne Randall takes a fresh look at one of the most brilliant, conflicted, and elusive of our nation's founders. Orphaned at thirteen and apprenticed in a counting house, the precocious Hamilton learned principles of business that helped him, as the first U.S. secretary of the treasury, to create the American banking system and invent the modern corporation. But first the staunch, intrepid Hamilton served in the American Revolution, primarily as aide-de-camp to General Washington, acting as Washington's spymaster. Forging a successful legal career, Hamilton coauthored The Federalist Papers and plunged into politics. Irresistibly attractive to women, he was a man of many gifts, but he could be arrogant and was at times a poor judge of character. In this meticulously researched, illuminating, and lively account, Willard Sterne Randall mines the latest scholarship to provide a new perspective on Alexander Hamilton, his illegitimate birth, little-known military activities, political and diplomatic intrigues, and sometimes scandalous private life. From his less than auspicious start in 1755 on the Caribbean island of Nevis to his untimely death in a duel with his old enemy Aaron Burr in 1804, Alexander Hamilton, despite his short and tragic life, left a huge legacy.… (mais)
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After learning that Alexander Hamilton was going to be replaced by a woman on the $10 bill, I picked this book up to learn more about just who were were replacing. Coming from almost complete ignorance, I found this book to be surprisingly fascinating and engaging as the author dug in deep to who exactly Hamilton was. We discover the foundations of likely thought process and yet aren't shielded from his weaknesses, mainly concerning women and his multiple affairs.

Born as a bastard on a Caribbean island, through hard work and excelling in what he did, he slowly found himself moving to America to study with the help of his sponsors where he became caught up with the founding of this country.

Though I don't want to go into too many details, Hamilton was certainly an extraordinary person who helped shape this country and save it from falling apart at its founding.

Whoever is chosen to replace him on the $10 certainly have enormous shoes to fill. ( )
  kikowatzy | Aug 26, 2015 |
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In the first full, one-volume biography of Alexander Hamilton in more than two decades, award-winning historian Willard Sterne Randall takes a fresh look at one of the most brilliant, conflicted, and elusive of our nation's founders. Orphaned at thirteen and apprenticed in a counting house, the precocious Hamilton learned principles of business that helped him, as the first U.S. secretary of the treasury, to create the American banking system and invent the modern corporation. But first the staunch, intrepid Hamilton served in the American Revolution, primarily as aide-de-camp to General Washington, acting as Washington's spymaster. Forging a successful legal career, Hamilton coauthored The Federalist Papers and plunged into politics. Irresistibly attractive to women, he was a man of many gifts, but he could be arrogant and was at times a poor judge of character. In this meticulously researched, illuminating, and lively account, Willard Sterne Randall mines the latest scholarship to provide a new perspective on Alexander Hamilton, his illegitimate birth, little-known military activities, political and diplomatic intrigues, and sometimes scandalous private life. From his less than auspicious start in 1755 on the Caribbean island of Nevis to his untimely death in a duel with his old enemy Aaron Burr in 1804, Alexander Hamilton, despite his short and tragic life, left a huge legacy.

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