Rachel Faucette Buck: Mother of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton

Rachel Faucette Buck: Mother of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton

Rachel Faucette Buck was better known as Rachel Faucett, the mother of Founding Father Alexander Hamilton. Here’s what we know about her:


It is not clear when Rachel was born – probably between 1725 and 1729. Historisch records indicate she lived on the Caribbean island Nevis with her parents, John and Mary Faucett. In 1745 she married merchant Johann Michael Lavien on St. Croix. They had a child together.

The Birth of Alexander Hamilton (1755-1768)

His birth circumstances are still debated by historians. There are those who believe Rachel and Lavien remained married when Alexander was born in 1755 or 1757. But evidence shows Rachel may have been separated or divorced by Lavien by then.

Court records from St. Croix record Rachel being imprisoned in 1749-1750 for adultery with Johan Cronenberg. That would presumably make James Hamilton, a Scotsman with whom Rachel lived, Alexander’s biological father.

Whatever the circumstances were, Rachel raised Alexander with her son from Lavien. Their finances failed and James Hamilton abandoned them.

Later Years and Death (1768)

Tragically, Rachel died at age 39 in 1768. It is unclear what caused her death.


Rachel Faucett was an important figure in Alexander Hamilton’s early childhood. Her struggle and determination definitely moulded the future Founding Father.

Her Son, Founding Father Alexander Hamilton

A giant in American history is Alexander Hamilton (1755/57 – 1804). Born outside wedlock on the Caribbean island of Nevis, he became the first Secretary of the Treasury and a Founding Father.

Hamilton’s birth year is debated, but historians put it between 1755 and 1757. His mother Rachel Faucette said she struggled financially after his father abandoned the family. A limited formal education helped Hamilton shine. He was very good and impressed many with his writing. He wrote a description of a hurricane on St. Croix which helped him get passage to America for further education.

The American Revolution inspired Hamilton. He enlisted in the Continental Army under General George Washington for his strategic mind and leadership ability. From there Hamilton became Washington’s trusted aide-de-camp. His persuasive writing helped also persuade public opinion of the war effort.

Following the war, Hamilton advocated for a strong federal government. He argued the Articles of Confederation were weak and fought for ratification of the U.S. Constitution. His essays in the “Federalist Papers” convinced many of the Constitution’s merits.

As the first Secretary of the Treasury under President Washington, Hamilton built his legacy. He set up a national bank, paid off war debts and introduced a tax system – important steps toward a sound financial foundation for the young nation. His ideas were controversial however. Hamilton believed in a powerful central government which opposed Thomas Jefferson’s vision of a strong agrarian republic. This ideological difference gave rise to America’s first political parties: The Federalists (Hamilton) and Democratic-Republicans (Jefferson).

Hamilton wed New York socialite Elizabeth Schuyler in 1780. Rumors of Hamilton’s extramarital affairs swirled despite his outward appearance as a happy family. His biggest political rival, Jefferson, also became his personal rival.

During 1800, Hamilton’s public attacks on Jefferson probably helped Aaron Burr lose the presidential election. This prompted Hamilton and Burr to duel in 1804. The wounded Hamilton died three days later at age 47.