Today I visited the Old Patent Office, which is now the National Portrait Gallery. I was eager to see two portraits in particular, one of Hamilton and another of Washington. neither disappointed. I wish I could say the same of the short bio posted next to the Hamilton portrait:
This copy was written by an antagonist to Hamilton. Nobody was a more partisan Hamilton-hater than John Adams, who (unjustly) blamed Hamilton for his loss of a second term in office. One suspects that the end of the first paragraph may have been written in sarcasm, referring to Hamilton's "success in marriage" and "reputation in law and politics." Note that he is the "instigator" of the Federalist papers. Harumph.
The second paragraph is even worse. Hamilton's policies were allegedly "intended to cement the moneyed interests to the new government," and "dominated Washington's administration." Washington was a thoroughly independent mind, who solicited Jefferson's opinion as often as Hamilton's, at least during his first term while Washington didn't yet know the extent of Jefferson's duplicitous betrayals. The last sentence recovers the fumble, but I hate that one has to read that far to find the praise so richly deserved for the memory of this man.
On the plus side, there was no portrait of Burr, at least none that I found. On the minus, there was none of Gouverneur Morris, who rivals Hamilton for my personal favorite among the Founders.