It’s a battle royal trying to get a ticket to Broadway’s top show, “Hamilton,” the historical hip-hop musical based on the life of first U.S. Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton. So, whether or not you’re one of the lucky ones to nab a seat‚ this is a perfect month to be entertained with all other things Hamilton—considering, too, that July marks the 212th anniversary of the duel between Hamilton and Vice President Aaron Burr, which took place in nearby Weehawken, New Jersey, and cost Hamilton his life.
Several Manhattan places link to Hamilton’s life and death, starting in hip-hop central, Harlem, where the only house he ever owned is located. Hamilton, a father of eight, built the large family home in 1802. It was moved twice and finally shifted to St. Nicholas Park in 2008, where it was restored to its former glory. The house is open to the public for free as the Hamilton Grange National Memorial, where rangers lead tours of period furnished rooms and exhibits.
Lin-Manuel Miranda, creator and star of “Hamilton,” wrote some of the show’s songs in the Morris-Jumel Mansion, where, on July 10, 1790, Hamilton dined with President George Washington and members of his administration. Some 40 years later, by a strange twist of fate, Aaron Burr married the widowed owner, Eliza Jumel, in the downstairs parlor. The marriage only lasted three years. Eliza hired Alexander Hamilton’s son as her divorce attorney; Burr died the same day the divorce was granted in 1836.
Much farther downtown, Hamilton practiced law and later founded the Bank of New York. On Wall Street, in the former Bank of New York Building, the Museum of American Finance’s Alexander Hamilton Room details Hamilton’s postwar efforts to rebuild America and create the modern-day financial system. It also has two reproduction dueling pistols.
After Hamilton was shot and injured in the infamous duel, he was rowed back across the Hudson River to his friend William Bayard’s house, where he died the next day. At 82 Jane St., where the Bayard house once stood, a plaque commemorates the duel.
Finally, you can pay your respects by visiting Hamilton’s grave and tombstone in Trinity Church Cemetery (75 Broadway, 212.602.0800).