Lecture Series Returns with Presentation about Alexander Hamilton

August 17, 2023–The Paterson Museum Foundation invites you to join us on Zoom on Tuesday, September 12th at 7pm as public historian and author of Hamilton Versus Wall Street Nancy Spannaus presents “Hamilton’s Report on Manufactures: The Ideas That Shaped Our World.”

To register for the Zoom link, email events@patersonmuseumfoundation.org

In December of 1791, Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton issued one of the most important state papers in U.S. history, his Report on the Subject of Manufactures.[1] That paper defined principles of political economy which were the foundation for defending the liberties won in the Revolutionary War, and fulfilling the goals outlined in the Preamble of our Constitution.

Paterson Museum to Sponsor Spannaus Talk
Hamilton’s grand industrial project at Passaic Falls, New Jersey was part of his broad economic vision. (Leonard A. Zax)

At the same time, however, Hamilton was initiating what could be called a pilot project for his manufacturing perspective, the creation of the Society for Useful Manufactures at Passaic Falls and the city of Paterson! The history of Paterson’s success as a manufacturing center and Hamilton’s ideas are inextricably linked.

On September 12, Spannaus will discuss Hamilton’s economic perspective and its long-lasting impact on U.S. and world history. As Leonard Zax, founder and president emeritus of the Partnership for Paterson, put it in his review of Spannaus’s book, “Nancy Spannaus properly lifts Hamilton’s Report on Manufactures to a place of supreme importance in the annals of American economic history.”

In her talk, Spannaus will also take on a number of the myths which have prevented Americans from implementing his approach today.

This lecture will be presented virtually, via zoom. The lecture is free of charge, but donations to the Paterson Museum Foundation are requested. Donations can be submitted via paypal or check. For more information on the program, or to register for the Zoom link, please email events@patersonmuseumfoundation.org.

The Paterson Museum is run by the City of Paterson and has been in operation since 1925. In 1982, it moved to the restored Erecting Shop of the Rogers Locomotive and Machine Works, a renowned 19th century manufacturer of railroad steam engines, which built more than 6000 steam locomotives for railroads around the world. This relocation put it in close proximity to the site of Hamilton’s Society for Useful Manufactures, near Passaic Falls. The Museum tells the industrial history of Paterson.

Paterson Museum to Sponsor Spannaus Talk
The Rogers Locomotive and Machine Works building is now the home of the Paterson Museum. Paterson was also the home of Hamilton’s Society for Useful Manufactures.

For more information about the Foundation, visit www.patersonmuseumfoundation.org/

Nancy Spannaus is a public historian who has studied Alexander Hamilton since the 1970s. In 1977, she was co-editor of The Political Economy of the American Revolution, a compilation of key documents comprising that system, including those of Alexander Hamilton. In 2017 she began the blog americansystemnow.com, which serves as a resource for those interested in that system as it was developed and fought over throughout the centuries. The blog now contains more than 600 articles, many of which feature primary sources.

Spannaus published Hamilton Versus Wall Street: The Core Principles of the American System of Economics in 2019. To purchase the book, click here.

Spannaus holds a B.A. from Bryn Mawr College and an M.S. from Columbia University.

[1] For a summary of the Report’s content and its relevance to today, click here.


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