The ten-dollar bill features the portrait of Alexander Hamilton, one of the United States’ founding fathers and the first Secretary of the Treasury. The design of the bill has remained largely unchanged since 1929, although the US Treasury did announce plans to redesign the bill in 2020 to feature a woman, sparking controversy among supporters of Hamilton.
Ultimately, the Treasury announced that Hamilton’s image would remain on the bill, but that it would feature additional images of women and civil rights activists on the back. Like other US bills, the ten-dollar bill features several security features, although concerns have been raised about the effectiveness of these measures.
Some key facts about Alexander Hamilton and his presence on the $10 bill:
- Hamilton was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States and influential in establishing the nation’s financial system. He served as the first Secretary of the Treasury from 1789 to 1795.
- He established the First Bank of the United States and the U.S. Mint and is credited as the father of the American economic system.
- Hamilton was selected to be on the $10 bill in 1928 when U.S. currency was overhauled to feature portraits of presidents and statesmen.
- Prior to Hamilton, several different historical figures were featured on the $10 bill in the late 1800s and early 1900s, including Daniel Webster, Michael Hillegas, and Meriwether Lewis.
- Hamilton has continuously appeared on the $10 bill since 1928, unlike other denominations which have rotated among presidents. This is due to the significance of his financial contributions.
- In 2015, a movement to replace Hamilton on the $10 with a woman (like Harriet Tubman) gained some momentum before stalling. Hamilton has remained on the bill.
- The current design featuring Hamilton’s portrait dates to 2006 when all bills got new security features, colors, and designs. But Hamilton himself has adorned the $10 note for nearly a century.
So in summary, Founding Father Alexander Hamilton has been the face of the $10 bill since 1928 in recognition of his pivotal role in establishing the nation’s financial system.
Who Is On The $10 Bill?
Alexander Hamilton, the face of the ten-dollar bill, was born on 11 January 1755 in the West Indies. He was orphaned at a young age and eventually made his way to the American colonies to pursue his education. He quickly made a name for himself as a brilliant writer and thinker, publishing articles in support of the American Revolution and serving as an aide to George Washington during the war.
After the war, Hamilton became one of the leading figures in the new American government. He played a key role in the drafting of the US Constitution, and he was the driving force behind the creation of the US financial system. As the first Secretary of the Treasury, Hamilton implemented policies that helped establish the credit of the new government including the creation of the Bank of the United States.
Alexander Hamilton: Key Facts
Hamilton was also known for his feuds with other contemporary political figures. He famously clashed with Thomas Jefferson over issues of government power and economic policy. He also had a long-standing rivalry with Aaron Burr which ultimately culminated in a duel in 1804 that resulted in Hamilton’s death.
Despite his now-famous accomplishments, Hamilton’s legacy was not fully appreciated until long after his death. He was largely overshadowed by his contemporaries, such as Jefferson and Washington, and his contributions to the founding of the United States were often overlooked. However, in recent years, Hamilton has experienced a resurgence in popularity due in large part to the success of the musical Hamilton which tells the story of his life.
One notable tale from Hamilton’s life involves his role in the founding of the New York Post. In 1801, Hamilton was approached by a group of investors who wanted to start a new newspaper in New York City. Hamilton agreed to help and became the paper’s first editor. Under his guidance, the Post quickly gained a reputation for its lively and controversial content. It remains one of the oldest and most widely read newspapers in the United States today.
One of the most famous and scandalous stories involving Hamilton is the so-called “Reynolds affair,” in which he became embroiled in a scandal involving an extramarital affair. In 1791, Hamilton began an affair with Maria Reynolds, the wife of a man who was blackmailing him. When the affair was made public, Hamilton was forced to admit to his actions in a series of letters known as the “Reynolds pamphlet.” Although the scandal damaged Hamilton’s reputation, he managed to continue his work as one of the country’s leading political figures.
Brief History Of The $10 Bill
Over the years, the design of the ten-dollar bill has changed several times with different images, patterns and words or phrases appearing on the front and back of the bill.
The first ten-dollar bill was issued by the Continental Congress in 1775. These bills featured patriotic mottos in Latin, the imprint of a leaf, and intricate details designed to prevent counterfeiting. However, the first 10 dollar bill “as we know it” was issued in 1861 by the newly formed United States government during the Civil War. These bills featured a portrait of Treasury Secretary Salmon P. Chase who played a key role in financing the Union war effort.
In 1869, the first ten-dollar bill featuring Alexander Hamilton was issued. These bills were part of the first series of US currency to feature a standardized design, with portraits of notable Americans on the front and allegorical images on the back. In 1928, the size of US currency was reduced by about 30%, and the design was modified to include more intricate details and security features.
During World War II, the design was changed to include a red “V” overprinted on the back, symbolizing the Allies’ victory. This design was used between 1942 and 1945.
In the 1990s, the design of US currency was updated again, with more advanced security features to prevent counterfeiting. The ten-dollar bill was modified to include a watermark portrait of Hamilton, a security thread and color-shifting ink.
Design Of The $10 Bill
The current design of the ten-dollar bill which has been around since 2006 features a portrait of Alexander Hamilton on the front, with a vignette of the United States Treasury building on the back. The bill is primarily green in color and features several security features including a watermark and a security thread.
Beneath Hamilton’s portrait is a banner displaying the word “HAMILTON”. The “10” is printed in color-shifting ink which transitions from a copper shade to a green shade when moved around in good lighting. On the back, above the vignette of the US Treasury is the motto “IN GOD WE TRUST”.
Redesign Of The $10 Bill
In 2015, the US Treasury announced plans to redesign the ten-dollar bill to feature a woman’s image, replacing Hamilton on the front of the bill. This decision was made in response to criticism that US currency featured only white men and did not reflect the diversity of the country.
The Treasury launched a public campaign to solicit suggestions for who should be featured on the new bill, and a number of prominent women were suggested, including Harriet Tubman, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Susan B. Anthony. Ultimately, the Treasury announced that the new ten-dollar bill would feature a woman, but that Hamilton would remain on the front of the bill in some capacity.
The exact design of the new bill has not yet been announced, but the Treasury has indicated that it will feature images of women and civil rights activists on the back of the bill. The redesigned bill was originally scheduled to be unveiled in 2020, but the Treasury announced in 2019 that the redesign had been delayed until at least 2026 due to technical issues related to producing the new bills.
The decision to replace Hamilton on the ten-dollar bill sparked controversy among some supporters of the founding father, who argued that he played a crucial role in establishing the financial system of the United States and deserved to remain on the bill. Others argued that it was important to feature a woman on US currency, given the contributions of women throughout American history.
$10 Bill Security Issues
The most significant controversy surrounding the ten-dollar bill in recent years has been the proposed redesign to feature a woman. After the US Treasury announced its plans to redesign the bill in 2020, supporters of Alexander Hamilton launched a campaign to keep his image on the bill. The controversy ultimately led to the Treasury announcing that Hamilton’s image would remain on the bill, but that it would feature additional images of women and civil rights activists on the back.
In addition to the controversy over the redesign, there have also been concerns about the security features of the ten-dollar bill. Like other US bills, the ten-dollar bill features several security features, including a watermark and a security thread. However, counterfeiters have been able to create fake bills that can fool many people, leading to concerns about the effectiveness of these security measures.
What security features does the ten-dollar bill have?
The ten-dollar bill features several security features including a watermark of Hamilton’s portrait and a security thread. However, counterfeiters have been able to create fake bills that can fool many people, leading to concerns about the effectiveness of these security measures.
Are there any other US bills that feature Alexander Hamilton’s portrait?
No, the ten-dollar bill is the only US bill that features Alexander Hamilton’s portrait. However, Hamilton’s image has also appeared on commem orative coins and medals issued by the US Mint.
Who decides which images appear on US currency?
The Secretary of the Treasury is responsible for deciding which images appear on US currency, with input from various advisory groups and, sometimes, the public.
Has the ten-dollar bill ever featured a woman before?
No, the ten-dollar bill has never featured a woman on the front. However, Martha Washington, the wife of George Washington, appeared on the face of the one-dollar silver certificate in the late 19th century.
Can I still use old ten-dollar bills?
Yes, old ten-dollar bills remain legal tender and can still be used for transactions. However, older bills may not have the same security features as newer bills and may be more susceptible to counterfeiting.