Charlestown, Nevis

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Island of Nevis, Birthplace of Alexander Hamilton

What happened here:

Place Name: Alexander Hamilton Birthplace

Location: Charlestown, Nevis, West Indies

Event in Hamilton’s life: Alexander Hamilton was born on the island of Nevis on January 11, 1757. He lived on the island with his two parents and brother James until the family moved to the nearby island of St. Croix in 1765. 

Get the details:
Alexander Hamilton was born in Charlestown on the West Indian island of Nevis on January 11, 1757. Few details about his time on the island are known, and facts about his childhood have been slowly discovered over the years.

His father, James Hamilton, was the fourth son of Alexander Hamilton, Laird of Grange in Ayrshire, Scotland, and his wife Elizabeth. Alexander Hamilton's mother, Rachael Fawcett Lavien, was born on Nevis to John Fawcett, a local doctor of French Huguenot origin, and his British wife, Mary Uppington Fawcett. Rachael’s parents owned a small plantation in the Gingerland region of Nevis.

Prior to meeting James Hamilton, Rachael was married in 1745 on the island of St. Croix to John Michael Lavien, a man with whom she had a son named Peter. It is believed that Rachael's relationship with John Lavien was unhappy and possibly abusive. Rachel remained in that relationship for five years before she left her husband and son. Their divorce was not finalized until 1759, in which it was stipulated that Rachael was prohibited from remarrying. James Hamilton and Rachel Fawcett Lavien lived as a common-law couple for about 15 years and had two children, James and Alexander.

The island of Nevis was part of the British Empire at the time and was a center of the slave trade in the Caribbean. The house where Alexander Hamilton was born was situated on a waterfront estate inherited by Rachel from her father. Alexander spent the first eight years of his life on Nevis before his family moved to St. Croix.

Sponsored Websites:
Nevis Historical and Conservation Society

nevis 1

How to visit:

The Alexander Hamilton Museum was built on what are believed to be the foundations of the original house in which the Hamilton family lived. The double exterior staircase from the original structure is preserved and has been incorporated into the modern building.

The Alexander Hamilton Museum hosts the Museum of Nevis History on the first floor and the Nevis House of Assembly on the second floor. Across the Museum's inner yard lies the Nevis Heritage Center, which houses the exhibit Alexander Hamilton: The Man Who Made Modern America that was put together by the New-York Historical Society.

Visiting informationAlexander Hamilton Museum

Name of Key Contact: Evelyn Henville, Director of Nevis Historical and Conservation Society

Telephone Number(s): 1-869-469-5786

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