Alexander Hamilton was one of the most influential founding fathers of the United States. Known for his contributions to the Federalist Papers, his role in shaping the US financial system, and his famous duel with Aaron Burr, Hamilton's legacy is firmly cemented in American history. However, one lesser-known aspect of Hamilton's life is his use of taverns during the American Revolution.
During the Revolutionary War, taverns played a crucial role in the social and political life of the colonies. They served as meeting places for locals to gather and discuss the latest news, as well as places for travelers to rest and refresh themselves. For Hamilton, taverns were particularly important for his military career.
Hamilton's first experience with taverns came in 1774, when he arrived in Boston to study at King's College (now Columbia University). As tensions between the colonists and the British grew, Hamilton began attending meetings at the Green Dragon Tavern, a popular meeting spot for revolutionary leaders. It was here that Hamilton met Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and other key figures in the revolutionary movement.
Hamilton's involvement with the Green Dragon Tavern would prove to be just the beginning of his relationship with taverns. In 1776, he was appointed as a captain in the Continental Army and was soon stationed in New York. While there, he frequented the Fraunces Tavern, a popular gathering spot for both British and American officers.
It was at Fraunces Tavern that Hamilton would make a name for himself as a skilled negotiator. In 1783, he was tasked with negotiating the end of the war with British General