COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Alexander Hamilton is staying on the $10 bill, and a descendant of the nation’s first Treasury secretary called the government’s decision a “huge win” for Hamilton supporters.
Ohioan Doug Hamilton had spoken out against proposals that his great-great-great-great-great grandfather be removed from the $10 note or have a diminished role on it to make room for honoring a woman on the bill.
Treasury officials announced Wednesday that Hamilton will keep his spot, but the back of the bill will be changed to commemorate a 1913 march that ended on the steps of the Treasury building that featured suffragette leaders. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew said the $20 bill also will be redesigned, with a portrait of African-American abolitionist Harriet Tubman replacing one of Andrew Jackson. The seventh president will be pushed to the back of the note.
Doug Hamilton, of suburban Columbus, said he’d been anticipating the news and was thrilled to hear it while on a business trip in Dublin, Ireland. He said he received a cordial call from the Treasury to confirm the decision.
“To me, this is a huge win because to take on the government, it was a difficult thing,” he said by phone Wednesday night. He said he thinks Hamilton prevailed in part because “the sacrifices that he made obviously now are being understood and realized.”
Book authors, Hamilton experts, journalists, organizations and hundreds of other backers helped reach that point by publicizing the issue, he said. He also credits the influence of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Pulitzer-winning musical “Hamilton,” which Doug Hamilton said he’s seen multiple times.
“It gives me hope that people are still studying this part of our history,” he said.
Find Kantele Franko at http://www.twitter.com/kantele10 . Her work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/author/kantele-franko .