Rictor Norton, "The Gay Love Letters of Alexander Hamilton: February 1, 1998
Revolutionary Love, The Gay Love Letters of Alexander Hamilton, Excerpts from My Dear Boy: Gay Love Letters through the Centuries (1998), edited by Rictor Norton.
Alexander Hamilton (1757–1804) was a pamphleteer in support of Colonial freedom, and fought in the American Revolutionary Army under George Washington and Lafayette. He served in the Continental Congress 1782–83, then began a law practice in New York. After the war he helped to found the Federalist Party (writing many noted essays in The Federalist) and influenced national politics. His long-time adversary, Vice President Aaron Burr, killed him in a duel in 1804. The aristocratic Southerner John Laurens (1754–1782), also an aide to General Washington, once fought a duel to defend Washington's honour. In 1780 he was held prisoner of war by the British at the defeat of Charleston, South Carolina. On his release, he went to France to raise funds for the Revolutionary Army, which he rejoined on his return. He was killed in a minor foraging party on August 27, 1782. Hamilton wrote to Laurens while Laurens was organizing black slaves to fight the British in South Carolina in 1779, and after Laurens' capture in 1780. Laurens had married in 1776, but his letters were passionate on the subject of friendship, as when he wrote to his friend Richard Meade: "Adieu: I embrace you tenderly. . . . My friendship for you will burn with that pure flame which has kindled you your virtues." Hamilton, who had not yet married, playfully raises the subject of marriage as a substitute or displacement for his own love of Laurens, as an opportunity to explore his own feelings and to gauge the other man's response.
Rictor Norton, ed. My Dear Boy: Gay Love Letters through the Centuries (Leyland Publications, first edition February 1, 1998).