The New York Times has done it again. On the heels of its infamous 1619 Project, a “culture reporter” at the so-called newspaper of record writes that Alexander Hamilton “bought, sold and personally owned slaves” and was an “enslaver.”
Historians and biographers have debated the status of Hamilton as a slaveowner for decades, but a new essay titled “As Odious and Immoral a Thing: Alexander Hamilton’s Hidden History as an Enslaver,” written by Jessie Serfilippi, a historical interpreter at the Schuyler Mansion, asserts, “Not only did Alexander Hamilton enslave people, but his involvement in the institution of slavery was essential to his identity, both personally and professionally.” Continuing its attack on American history and the Founding Fathers, The New York Times was all too willing to repeat these assertions without question.
Despite the Times’s endorsement, Serfilippi’s essay is riddled with errors, omissions, assumptions, speculations, and misrepresentations concerning the history of Hamilton on the subject of slavery. The essay presents