"She must be young—handsome (I lay most stress upon a good shape) Sensible (a little learning will do)—well bred. . . chaste and tender (I am an enthusiast in my notions of fidelity and fondness); of some good nature—a great deal of generosity (she must neither love money nor scolding, for I dislike equally a termagant and an economist)—In politics, I am indifferent what side she may be of—I think I have arguments that will safely convert her to mine—As to religion a moderate stock will satisfy me—She must believe in God and hate a saint. But as to fortune, the larger stock of that the better."
On December 14 1780, Alexander Hamilton and Elizabeth Schuyler were married at Schuyler Mansion in Albany, New York. Throughout her life, Elizabeth Hamilton defended her husband against his critics, maintaining his authorship of George Washington's "Farewell Address" and refusing to acknowledge his responsibility in the duel and sexual scandals of his life. James Monroe had accused Alexander of financial irregularities during the Reynolds affair. Steadfast until the end, Elizabeth demanded a complete apology, which Monroe would not give. Before his death, Monroe visited Elizabeth to reconcile their differences concerning her husband's reputation, but Hamilton gave the former president a cool reception and refused his apology.
Elizabeth (known as Eliza or Betsey), survived Hamilton for fifty years, until 1854. An extremely religious woman, Eliza spent much of her life working to help widows and orphans. After Hamilton's death, she co-founded New York's first private orphanage, the New York Orphan Asylum Society.
Hamilton and Elizabeth had 10 children, although this can be confusing because two sons were named "Philip" and two were named "John C." The elder Philip, Hamilton's first child, was killed in 1801 in a duel with a prominent Jeffersonian whom he had publicly insulted in a Manhattan theater. The second Philip, Hamilton's last child, was born in 1802. Another son was William S. Hamilton, a politician.