An ALS as senior officer of the US Army, a position given to him by George Washington
As the first Treasury Secretary (1789–95), Hamilton issued three brilliant, controversial reports to Congress, aimed at strengthening the national government. The first, favoring funding of the federal deficit at par and assuming state debts, helped establish national credit; the second proposed a national bank; the third advocated bounties and subsidies to boost...
As the first Treasury Secretary (1789–95), Hamilton issued three brilliant, controversial reports to Congress, aimed at strengthening the national government. The first, favoring funding of the federal deficit at par and assuming state debts, helped establish national credit; the second proposed a national bank; the third advocated bounties and subsidies to boost manufacturing. Taken as a whole, Hamilton designed his program to win the public creditors to the government’s support and to help the nation develop economically.
Hamilton had successfully led a regiment in the Revolution, and his vision for national grandeur included establishment of a professional military. During the presidency of John Adams, Hamilton’s prestige remained high and members of the President’s Cabinet often sought out his advice. In 1798, with a possible war against France looming, George Washington wrote a letter indicating that he wanted Hamilton to be appointed Inspector General, which would make him second in command of the U.S. Army. And since Washington, who was first in command, declined active service, organizing and managing the Army would fall to Hamilton. Hamilton was given the appointment and served from 1798-1800.
Col. William Irvine served under the command of General Wayne, with the 2nd Pennsylvania Brigade, and participated in the Battle of Monmouth on June 28, 1778. Also participating in that battle was a young Alexander Hamilton. Irvine received a promotion to Brigadier General on May 12, 1779. In September 1781, the Continental Congress, on recommendation from General Washington, ordered Irvine to take command of the Western Department, headquartered at Fort Pitt. He held this strategic post until October 1783. After the war, Irvine commenced a career in public service. He served as delegate to the Continental Congress and as a Representative in the United States Congress. President Jefferson later appointed Irvine Superintendent of Military Stores in Philadelphia, a post he held until his death in 1804.
Irvine’s eldest son was Callender Irvine. After briefly reading law with Jared Ingersoll of Philadelphia, Callender spent a season traveling with his father as a surveyor’s assistant, helping to lay out western Pennsylvania. In June of 1798, Callender received a commission as captain of artillery in the United States Army. He spent his brief time mainly at Carlisle while suffering from an illness, a subject about which he corresponded with Hamilton. By 1800, he was ill enough that his father wrote to Hamilton asking that the son be relieved from duties for a time.
Autograph Letter Signed, New York, February 27, 1800, to General Irvine, accommodating his old comrade in arms. “The enclosed letter to your son is a compliance with your request. I regret much his situation and hope for his restoration; well persuaded that the interest of the service coincides in this particular with the wishes of his friends. Assure yourself always of the esteem and regard with which I am truly…” The address panel in Hamilton’s hand is still present.
Callender Irvine resigned from the army on May 20, 1801. He then moved to western Pennsylvania, received a commission as an Indian agent to the Six Nations and also administered his father’s reserve, granted to William Irvine for service during the Revolutionary War. During the War of 1812, Irvine was appointed Commissary General of the United States Army, a post he held until his death in 1841.
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