Alexander Hamilton's Economic Crisis

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With the election of George Washington as the first president, the newly formed republic of the U.S. faced a number of domestic problems. In an attempt to tackle the economic crisis, Secretary of State, Alexander Hamilton, proposed his financial plan which was intended to transform the U.S. into an industrial and commercial power. This plan entailed two reports on public credit, one on the installation of a national bank, and finally a report on manufactures. This report on manufactures encompassed Hamilton 's vision of America 's economic future based on industry and manufacturing as integral components of the emerging American society, which he thought would propel the U.S. to becoming not only a nation equal to Britain and France, but one that was superior on every level. In his Report on Manufactures, Hamilton strongly urges congress to adopt manufacturing into the predominantly agricultural economy. In doing so, Hamilton believed that the U.S. could become a self-dependent nation, and one that would not have to rely on "foreign nations for military and other essential supplies (Norton Mix, 5). The way things stood now,…show more content…
When this report was brought in front of congress, no man stood stronger opposition to it than Thomas Jefferson. Jefferson had a strong believe that the future of the Republic stood in the agrarian way. He argued that the introduction of industry would threaten and take advantage of the yeoman farmer, and his freedom and independence through ownership. Hamilton 's program directly went against Jefferson 's vision, and thus, he was a strong opponent to Hamilton 's plans. Moreover, Jefferson believed that the enterprise that Hamilton proposed, along with factory, would allow for the manipulation of its workers, and the removal of independence among the citizens of the nation. Jefferson believed that true freedom and equality of the American people rested in their ownership of land as farmers, and that seeking wealth would corrupt the American
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