Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton’s powder horn is up for auction.

alexander-hamiltonI’ve become obsessed with Alexander Hamilton for a while now. He was married to Elizabeth Schuyler, a member of First Presbyterian Church in Albany (my current church!), in 1780. When Aaron Burr killed Hamilton in an 1804 duel, First Presbyterian Albany minister Eliphalet Nott wrote a persuasive sermon that led to the demise of dueling in America.

It definitely intensified with that campaign by some group to put a woman on the $20 bill, replacing Andrew Jackson, something I fully supported.

But then I heard about the Treasury Department’s plan to put a woman on the $10 bill, replacing Hamilton, our first Treasury secretary, and the greatest immigrant among the founders of the country. That plan was tweaked to keep Hamilton on the bill somewhere.

Hamilton’s greatness has become clear as I started listening to the soundtrack of the Broadway musical Hamilton, an extraordinary work by Lin-Manuel Miranda. Here’s the introductory piece. The production is quite influential among some folks; for instance, I found an article titled ‘Hamilton’ Makes Me Want to Be Great.

My family has given three copies of the soundtrack to the musical as Christmas presents this season, and I finally got a copy myself. Getting a ticket to the show is much more difficult, though President Obama has seen it twice, once in previews.

This is a prediction, based on nothing but a gut feeling, and the unexplained postponement of the $10 redesign. Obama decides that the $10 won’t be replaced after all, because, in his feisty last year, he wouldn’t do that to old Alex. Instead, he dumps Jackson, an opponent of the banking system. He suggests a woman, a black woman, maybe Rosa Parks, but I’m hoping Harriet Tubman.

Chuck Miller points out that Alexander Hamilton’s powder horn is up for auction on January 11, 2016.