THE BRITONIAN LIBRARY
A Family Empire: The Alexander Hamilton Cousins, 1750-1830
 The importance of Scots in the 18th century Empire has attracted much attention in recent publications. Often operating in families and kinship groups, Scots spread their interests widely in North America, the West Indies, and East India .... The history of another Scottish family, that of the Alexander Hamilton cousins and their siblings, amply confirms the tricontinental ambit of Scots in the 18th and 19th centuries, yet it also brings into doubt the aptness of an imperial model. It suggests that America was not forsaken after the Revolution. While the expansion of the British Empire afforded opportunities which Scots embraced, enduring family contacts allowed them to transcend a contracting Empire. They could also choose between Scotland and England. Just as members of the family whose activities Price has documented settled in London in the first half of the 18th century, so the Hamiltons gravitated at the beginning of the 19th century towards Liverpool, where family connecions afforded them better prospects. A quadrangular pattern of interests may therefore appear more apt than a tricontinental one.....