Lin-Manuel Miranda Gets Good News from Treasury About Keeping Hamilton on $10 Bill

News   Lin-Manuel Miranda Gets Good News from Treasury About Keeping Hamilton on $10 Bill
 
Sec. Lew tells him, "You're going to be very happy."
The cast of <i>Hamilton</i> at the White House
The cast of Hamilton at the White House

As long as he was in Washington, DC March 14, Lin-Manuel Miranda, author and star of the Broadway musical Hamilton, took Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew up on his invitation to visit the Treasury Department and put in a few good words for his alter ego, Alexander Hamilton.

Last June, Lew announced that the Treasury was planning to add the face of a woman to the image of the show's namesake, Alexander Hamilton, on the ten-dollar bill. Nevertheless there was also talk that Hamilton might be replaced entirely. Hamilton was the nation's first Treasury Secretary. The show refers to its title character as "the ten-dollar founding father."

As widely reported this week, Miranda met with Lew on March 14 en route to a planned visit to the White House. After a tour of Hamilton memorabilia at the Treasury Department, Lew reassured Miranda that his alter ego would continue to be honored on the currency.

Miranda tweeted:

A Treasury spokesperson additionally told Playbill.com March 17 that Lew had also met with Miranda and the cast of Hamilton in August 2015 when he saw the musical on Broadway, and assured them they could trust "that he would be true to his commitment made from the start to continue to honor Alexander Hamilton" on the tenner.

The exact nature of that honor remains under wraps. No date for the release of the revised design or the new bills has been specified. In a statement released to the press March 17, the Treasury spokesperson said, “You will be hearing about that decision soon.”

Secetary Lew had said last summer that Hamilton could share the sawbuck with the first woman on American paper currency in more than a century. She would be chosen with "national input." But he added, "We are exploring a range of options to make sure that he [Hamilton] continues to be honored on the 10."

After an outcry, Lew reassured CNN's Christine Romans, "I’ve said from the start that Alexander Hamilton is one of my heroes, he’s certainly a hero in this building, and that we are going to honor Alexander Hamilton as we go forward, but we’re going to have an exciting announcement to make.”

In an August 27 Interview with New York Magazine's Annie Lowrey, Lew said, “We’ve been talking about the redesign of the currency since before I came to the Treasury, and I made clear from the very beginning that we have to honor Hamilton. I think that it might have been falsely presented as a choice: Does he have a place on our currency or not? But we have a bunch of choices to make over how to honor Hamilton, as well as how to highlight the important contributions women have made to our country and honor our inclusive democracy. We heard a lot of voices — mine being one of them — saying how important Hamilton is. So I wasn’t surprised by that. We’ve said all along that he’s going to be honored, and people will have to wait to form a judgement on whether we have made good on that."

A Treasury spokesperson told Playbill.com, "On Monday [March 14], Secretary Lew welcomed Lin-Manuel Miranda to the U.S. Department of the Treasury. The Secretary and Miranda talked about the enduring mark Alexander Hamilton left on our nation’s history, and the Secretary provided a brief tour of Hamilton’s possessions and portraits on display at the Treasury Department.

“The Secretary thanked Miranda for the ingenious way in which he has been able to tell Hamilton’s story and ignite a renewed interest in one of our nation’s founding fathers. Secretary Lew also reiterated his commitment to continue to honor Alexander Hamilton on the 10 dollar bill.”

“America’s currency is a way for our nation to make a statement about who we are and what we stand for,” Lew reportedly said. “Our paper bills—and the images of great American leaders and symbols they depict—have long been a way for us to honor our past and express our values.”

Among women who were depicted on various bills during the 19th century were Pocahontas and Martha Washington, according to Treasury officials. Miranda reacted to the news last summer with a series of messages posted on Twitter:

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