Kevin Ross: Grade 8
What is Hamilton? It is a musical based off of the famous politician, Alexander Hamilton. There is more to his life than getting shot by Aaron Burr. The musical shows how Hamilton got into a feud with Burr and how their anger toward each other slowly built up. At first glance, they seemed like people who had the same beliefs, but it turned out that Burr took things too slowly. Hamilton never stopped working. In fact, Hamilton asked Burr to help him write some essays known as The Federalist Papers to help him defend the new U.S. Constitution, but Burr turned him down. Hamilton instead joined up with John Jay and James Madison. They originally were supposed to write 25 essays, but instead ended up writing 85, with John Jay writing 5, James Madison writing 29, and Hamilton writing the final 51.
The musical goes on to show how Hamilton and Burr got into feuds. Burr eventually ran for president in 1800 against Hamilton’s number one enemy, Thomas Jefferson. The election eventually came down to a tie. It was up to Hamilton to decide who became president. In a surprise to Burr, he picked Jefferson, because Burr had not explained what he would do as president. Jefferson actually had beliefs of making at least part of the United States great, while Burr just stood in the background with only hopes of having the title of U.S. president. Eventually, Burr challenged him to their legendary duel, which ended with him shooting while Hamilton fired his weapon into the sky.
The story doesn’t end there. Hamilton’s wife Elizabeth ended up doing what Hamilton always wanted to do, write. She interviewed every soldier who fought by Hamilton’s side. She then raised funds in Washington, D.C., for the Washington monument, and she spoke out against slavery. She even built the first private orphanage in New York. The musical Hamilton lets us know that when worse comes to worse, use that little spark of ambition inside of you.