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Founding Brothers

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10. I believe that Ellis was right in this assumption. His ability to show the stories and relationships between the founders of our nation serves as a very interesting and unique history lesson. This takes a look at their personalities and why they did some of the things they did. You are also presented with a greater reasoning of why things happened the way they did, such as the aggression between Hamilton and Burr that led to their fateful duel. You find out, not only that they had a duel and Hamilton lost, but what the reasons were for the duel and their actions and behavior before, during, and after the duel gives you insight into the rest of their life and how they did things. You also see why some of the founders got along better than others and why certain events happened. One such event was Hamilton's new bank proposal which was accepted and approved because of a dinner that Jefferson held between Hamilton and Madison. This gave them a chance to talk it over and also showed the political mastermind that was Thomas Jefferson, as he knew how to get things done. The drawbacks of presenting the history in this way is that it doesn't go down through the revolutionary period and pinpoint every event that happened, just capitalizing on some of the bigger events that happened to and between the founders and going into great detail about them. Thus, you don't know everything about the revolution but his concepts on the events and trying to get into their heads to really understand what was going on more than makes up for this to me.

3. The duel between Hamilton and Burr was one of my favorite chapters of the book. This was not simply a petty argument but a duel over the other's honor that stemmed from political disagreements. Hamilton had denounced Burr politically for certain elections and had caused him not to be elected and this angered Burr. This continued for several years and finally Burr challenged Hamilton to a duel. It was not really a dislike or hatred for one another as individuals, but over political disputes that occur all the time and their separate parties. Burr felt that he could make himself look better politically by having this duel with Hamilton and Hamilton accepted to save his honor. Once the duel was over however, the newspapers made Burr look almost like a criminal because they made it seem like he had almost murdered Hamilton, thus making Hamilton a hero and Burr the villain which was the exact opposite effect that Burr had hoped to manage. Words at that time had more significance and men would kill each other over them like it was nothing, but society has become more pacifistic in time and now they are angering but nothing physical comes from them. The press can still today make or break someone's image. The way they report on events gives the public the picture but it can be shown to be interpreted more a certain way. This can make actions turn out different than u thought they would.

5. The founding brothers were America's first, last, and natural aristocracy. They were not all

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