Alexander Hamilton And The Importance Of September 11th

Trinity Church Yard where Alexander Hamilton is buried on Sept. 11, 2001.

By Arthur Piccolo

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Weds. Sept. 11, 2019: September 11, 2001 was an epic tragedy that will not be forgotten, but it is not the most important September 11th in American history.

Not even close. September 11, 178, is a defining moment in America, and by extension world history, that shaped our world in positive and profound ways and will for all time in ways that no tragedy ever could.

September 11, 1789, Alexander Hamilton became the First Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, at the corners of Wall Street and Broad Street, in Lower Manhattan, the first capitol of the United States of America. It would not have been more important had Hamilton become President that day. It was in his role as Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton saved the Presidency and the United States itself.

Those who know that it is beyond dispute that without Hamilton becoming Secretary of the Treasury and the Savior of the nation there would be no United States as we know it today or indeed any United States at all. And there is absolute proof of that fact. The United States under the Constitution was not the first attempt at American nation building after the Revolution. The Articles of Confederation whose failure led to the Constitutional Convention organized by Hamilton and Madison that produced the current version of our nation, the failed Articles was the first attempt that Hamilton and Madison led the effort to replace.

Whatever other faults the Articles of Confederation they recede into insignificance compared to its underlying flaw. They contained no realistic means to fund a national government the essential component of any nation. Yes, the fact is neither did the U.S. Constitution except that it produced a government that did create the position of Secretary of the Treasury and the powers that came with that office. Which would have proven meaningless in itself and led to the same fate for the new government its collapse as under the Articles of Confederation except for one man, America’s greatest immigrant, Alexander Hamilton.

Had the new government failed for a second time as it would have without Hamilton there would have been no third attempt. Some of the former colonies would have gone it alone others might have formed weak ultimately meaningless alliances. Most of all various European colonial powers would have re-descended on the colonies and all the land to the west of the colonies far more than they did and without the United States to block their way and today there would be any number of smaller nations carved out of what is now the United States of America and these original former 13 colonies. America would today have looked more like Europe or South America were it not for Alexander Hamilton.

George Washington for all his stature as First President of the new government was utterly helpless to solve the one overwhelming problem facing the government how would it fund itself. It was Hamilton and Hamilton alone whose genius had him clearly understand in an actionable way what no one in human history had ever realized before him. That it was not the current reality in America in 1789, a collection of still tumultuous often chaotic and mostly bankrupt 13 former colonies that defined these United States but it was the promise and the potential that the future of this vast new nation held is where is true value was stored.

It was Alexander Hamilton alone who understood he could sell the promise of America to the world in the form of government bonds that were eagerly purchased around the world and Hamilton’s ability to build and lead a financial system based on this very simple but all powerful concept that saved the United States and that laid the foundation that over the next 200 years would make America the greatest success story in human history and a model for every other nation on Earth.

This is why September 11, 1789, is so, so much more important than September 11, 2001, It is sadly poetically that the grave of Alexander Hamilton stood in the shadow of the World Trade Center towers clearly visible and in one of the crowning ironies in human history 212 years later to the day on which Hamilton became Secretary of the Treasury his grave was covered in the remnants of the towers in a tragic but unsuccessful attempt to destroy what Hamilton had created, the nation that his brilliance built.

September 11, 1789 is one of if not the defining moment in all of American history.

So, remember September 11, 2001, but even more remember September 11, 1789.

It is my belief September 11th should become a national holiday.


EDITOR’S NOTE: Arthur Piccolo is chairman of the Bowling Green Association and a weekly contributor to News Americas