Alexander Hamilton, Secretary of the Treasury under the Thomas Jefferson administration, often challenged political opponents to pistol duels, popular in his day. Sadly Hamilton's own son was killed in a similar type duel prior to the Burr and Hamilton fight.
Hamilton used dirty politics to taint Aaron's name by an insidious false claim when Burr was running for president of the United States. Therefore Burr–to protect his honor–invited Hamilton to a duel. It was his bullet that was the fatal shot heard around the world that ended Hamilton's life.
As a result, many people in 1804 turned bitterly against Burr, even though Hamilton asked for it when he used character assassination against his opponent running with Jefferson for the position of president of the United States. In those beginning years of the Democratic Republic, there was only one ticket for presidency–two candidates for one vote. The loser then became vice-president.
The result of this election ended in a tie and the votes had to be cast several times more until one person won. And it was Jefferson. Following this debacle of bribes and politics, a new ruling was made by Congress–separate ballots for offices of president and vice-president. So it was really a toss up as to who became our third president.
Meanwhile, Burr was cast as a pariah and his life was at stake–actually at hanging! If Hamilton had killed Burr, would the populace have wanted Hamilton hanged–even though duals were common as musket balls in those days? Meanwhile Burr retreated to St. Marys and St. Simmons Island in Georgia to friends houses to save his life–one house is on National Register. Mad mobs accused Burr as being a traitor, but this was not true. It took Supreme Court John Marshall to exonerate Burr from a false crime. As a side note, Marshall was so well liked and respected that when he died the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia cracked from being rung so many times in his honor. And as we all know, the crack is still on the famous bell.
Burr was buying up property in the West to encourage settlement, why he was accused as a traiter. But George Washington, two presidents before him, was buying up land even during the campaign to take over Fort Duquesne by helping build the Forbes road, the first US military highway. Washington laid out his town of Perryopolis in Pennsylvania. He also had a whiskey distillery and a mill built on his land, now restored and open to the public. By the way, it was Hamilton who wanted the whiskey distillers in Pennsylvania as well as a few other states to pay the price of the Revolutionary War. It was this decicion that caused the 1794 Whiskey Rebellion against the farmers.
Burr wanted to help immigration to the West by building a canal in Indiana. He raised enough money but his law suits against him consumed his time for years. After his death it was finally built. And as I wrote before, New York state Senator Burr also wanted Congress to abolish slavery against human rights, but Congress prevented it from happening–as history repeats itself even today when good causes for equality are voted down by Congress, mostly by political men in a man's world, an endless war economy. Yet Earth is referred to as a female.
Mame, what my grandchildren call me