The New York Public Library To Open New Exhibition Alexander Hamilton: Striver, Statesman, Scoundrel

Exhibition showcases historic documents from Hamilton's personal, military, and political life  

Alexander Hamilton has taken center stage on Broadway recently, and now the Founding Father will also be getting the spotlight at The New York Public Library's Stephen A. Schwarzman Building, in a new free exhibition Alexander Hamilton: Striver, Statesman, Scoundrel, opening June 24 in the building's Wachenheim Gallery. On display through December 31, 2016, the exhibition invites visitors to delve deeper into Hamilton's complex life and relationship to his colleagues, family, and country. 

"The Library's exhibition program exists to share our remarkable holdings with a wide audience," said exhibition curator Kailen Rogers. "We're eager to further the popular discussion of Hamilton and the early years of the United States by displaying historic materials that illuminate this complicated man and his era."

Alexander Hamilton: Striver, Statesman, Scoundrel features more than two dozen items on display from the Library's collections, focusing on his ambitious early life, work as a statesman and creation of the Federalist Papers, as well as the scandals that marred his legacy. The exhibition also explores Hamilton’s volatile relationships with Aaron Burr, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison.

Highlights from the exhibition include:

  • Hamilton's draft of George Washington's farewell address alongside Washington’s version 
  • The Federalist (commonly known as the Federalist Papers) as originally published in a historic newspaper
  • Hamilton's proposed plan for a U.S. Constitution
  • The Reynolds Pamphlet, in which Hamilton's admits to an affair with Maria Reynolds
  • Letters from Hamilton to his wife Eliza, and  her sister Angelica Schuyler Church; correspondence Hamilton sent on behalf of Washington, and a letter he sent to Washington about the Newburgh Conspiracy
  • Letter introducing Burr to the Schuyler family
  • Broadside of the letter that incited the duel that led to Hamilton's death

Support for The New York Public Library’s Exhibitions Program has been provided by Celeste Bartos, Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III, Mahnaz Ispahani Bartos and Adam Bartos Exhibitions Fund, and Jonathan Altman. Additional support for this exhibition has been provided by the Bertha and Isaac Liberman Foundation, Inc., in memory of Ruth and Seymour Klein.

Press Contact:

noralyons [at] nypl [dot] org

About The New York Public Library

The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at