Who Shot Alexander Hamilton

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					                                  AP US History
                           Who Shot Alexander Hamilton?

On July 11, 1804, Aaron Burr killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel. Hamilton was one of
the most brilliant thinkers of his time. A leader of the conservatives and a former
Secretary of the Treasury under George Washington, Hamilton was one of the most
influential Americans of his day. His beliefs and policies helped shape America and its
institutions.

Suppose for a moment we could turn history around and change the date and
circumstances of his death.

The date is January 25, 1799. Alexander Hamilton has been found dead in his home
in New York. A knife wound to his heart was the cause of his death. Stuck on the
knife, like bills on a spindle, were found: a copy of the Bill of Rights and A
Declaration of the Rights of Man. The chief of Police in New York City, your
teacher, searched the immediate vicinity of the Hamilton home and found some
additional evidence in a trash pit behind the house. A note with the following
words, “Thanks my friends, I know we’re going to do it” was found stuffed inside a
whiskey jug. A banknote and a receipt for a coach ticket from Philadelphia were
also found in the jug.

                         We Must Solve This Dastardly Crime

                              Use the following procedure

1. Complete a web search on the topic, “Alexander Hamilton.” Search for useful
   information about Alexander Hamilton’s life, career, political philosophy, etc.
2. Prepare a notecard on EACH of the suspects on the list. These should be 3-5 bullets
   and should give salient points of the individual’s biography that will assist you in
   determining whether he or she is a “proper suspect.”
3. You and your group members should then select from the suspect list at least 3, but
   not more than 5, possible suspects. Concentrate on individuals who had some
   connection with Hamilton, some reason to dislike him or his politics. It may be
   necessary to do some additional research about some of these suspects.
4. I recommend that you look closely at (a) the early military career of Alexander
   Hamilton; (b) the struggles over economic policy and foreign affairs during the
   Washington and Adams presidencies; (c) the tempestuous political struggle between
   Federalists and Jeffersonian Republicans during the late 1790s; (d) the political
   struggle within the Federalist Party during the late 1790s, (e) the national events
   immediately preceding the murder.
5. Class Presentation _______________.
                                  List of Suspects



1. Abigail Adams
2. John Adams
3. Pierre Adet
4. Benjamin Franklin Bache
5. Aaron Burr
6. James Thomas Callender
7. George Clinton
8. Dr. Thomas Cooper
9. William Duer
10. Philip Freneau
11. Patrick Henry
12. Albert Gallatin
13. Edmond Genet
14. Elbridge Gerry
15. Elizabeth Schuyler Hamilton
16. John Jay
17. Henry Knox
18. Robert Livingston
19. William Maclay
20. Alexander Macomb
21. James Madison
22. James McHenry
23. James Monroe
24. Samuel Osgood
25. Timothy Pickering
26. Charles C. Pinckney
27. Thomas Pinckney
28. Edmund Randolph
29. James Reynolds
30. Maria Reynolds
31. Philip Schuyler
32. Melancton Smith
33. Charles Talleyrand
34. John Taylor
35. Mercy Otis Warren
36. Noah Webster
37. James Wilkinson
38. Oliver Wolcott
39. Robert Yates
40. Thomas Jefferson

				
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posted:9/21/2012
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