Asked in Founding FathersHistory of the United StatesUS Constitution
What is the meaning of federalist?
May 25, 2008 7:51PM
There were two definitions of Federalists. The first were the Federalists, and they were people who advocated ratification of the Constitution in 1787. Prominent Federalists of this kind include the 3 writers of the Federalist Papers (Hamilton, Madison, and Jay), created for the above purpose, Benjamin Franklin, and George Washington. The second kind of federalist refers to the Federalist Party, created in 1790 over increasing controversy over the policies of Alexander Hamilton. Prominent Federalists of this kind include Alexander Hamilton, the leader of the Federalist Party until his untimely death in 1804, John Adams, second president, and all 4 of John Adams' cabinet members.
The first Federalists were only around as long as Constitutional ratification was debated, but the second Federalists, Federalist Party members, were around for most of the 1790s, but they splintered with the election of 1800 and finally collapsed with Alexander Hamilton's death via a duel.