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Alexander Hamilton 1755 - 1804 plunged into revolutionary action soon after this arrival in New York from the West Indies in 1773 He served in the Continental Army and then in the Continental Congress He being an advocate of a strong and centralized government wrote many of the Federalist essays that promoted the new constitution Hamilton participated in the Constitutional Convention When George Washington became president he appointed his intelligent and energetic ex-aide-de-camp Hamilton the position of the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States Hamilton embraced the challenge of helping his country out of debt and as soon as he got into office he set out immediately to correct these economic vexations He pieced together a financial plan from European and English precedents on such revenue methods as tariffs and excise taxes On January 14 1970 he submitted to Congress the details of his financial plan the Report on the Public Credit In his Report on the Public Credit Hamilton stated that public confidence in the government was crucial To do this he urged Congress to fund the entire nation debt at par and to assume completely the debts incurred by the states during the recent war This mean that the government would pay off an initial payment and the rest would be paid off through time with interest The national debt at the time was an enormous 54 million He proposed and supported the exchange of old war bonds for new Federal Reserve bonds He hoped that this would establish a sense that the United States was responsible in paying off its debts As a result other nations would allow the United States to borrow more money to establish a good credit Also Hamilton made a convincing case in persuading Congress to assume the debts of the states by stating that the debts of the states occurred during the war for independence States with heavy debts like Massachusetts were delighted with this
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