Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton
Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton Lily Dugas 3 Hour 3/2/11 In the making of America, there were many different opinions on government. Two of the most opinionated people were Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson. They both had very strong voices and were looked up to by many people. They always seemed to disagree with each other; they didn’t have the same ideas on the American government at all. Alexander Hamilton was born on January 11, 1755 on the island of Nevis in the West Indies. His father was James Hamilton, a Scottish Merchant, and his mother was Rachael Fawcette Levine.
During his adolescence, he served as a clerk and apprentice. Eventually he was enrolled in the Grammar school in Elizabeth Town, New Jersey. During the Revolutionary War, he helped greatly, teaming up with Washington for 4 years. Later, Hamilton was voted a member into the Continental Congress. While Washington was President, he became the first Secretary of Treasury.
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Thomas Jefferson was born on April 14, 1743, in Shadwell, Virginia. His father was Peter Jefferson, a successful surveyor and planter, and his mother was Jane Randolph. When he grew up he went to College of William and Mary, where he practiced law.
Later in his life he became a member of the House of Burgesses, then a member of the Continental Congress, where he was chosen to write the Declaration of Independence. When Washington was president, Jefferson became Secretary of State, and 4 years later he became the President. One of very few things that Jefferson and Hamilton did have in common was that they both loved America and believed that it could amount to something very successful. They just had different ways of getting there. Jefferson thought that people should have a lot of say in government. Hamilton thought the opposite. He said that the government should be strict.
Jefferson also thought that people’s liberties should be protected by laws. Hamilton thought that rights such as Freedom of Speech should sometimes be restricted. Jefferson and Hamilton also had different views on the constitution. Hamilton wanted a loose interpretation of the constitution, whereas Jefferson wanted it strict. Hamilton said that even if the constitution didn’t say anything about a national bank, government still had the authority. But Jefferson said that if the constitution didn’t state anything about a national bank, then the government didn’t have the power. When it came to the economy, they still had different opinions.
To Jefferson, the federal government should have a limited amount of power, giving more power to the states and the people. He also thought that the America should be based on things like agriculture and farming. Hamilton believed in a strong federal government, and said that a more strict government would give the country order so that industry and business could grow. I think our country should be based on both agriculture and manufacturing. So many things that we have today are not made in America, and I think that if we planted more crops and made more things that we would be a more successful country.
I also think it would be better because we would have more advantages if we had more agriculture and manufacturing put together. It’s a tough decision, but when you add it all together, I think Hamilton’s views are more practical. Though both views were very important in forming the government, Hamilton’s saw a country with great industrial power, which would create an overall very strong country. Jefferson’s views of a weak federal government could have led to a lot of problems that the federal government couldn’t solve. Hamilton’s idea of a strict government was better because it would keep America in order and out of chaos.