Hamilton: How Old The Schuyler Sisters Are

The Schuyler sisters play a major role in Hamilton, but the show never explains how old the sisters were during the course of the story. The events of Hamilton span decades of history, though the theatrical performance has few ways to indicate how much the characters are aging through it. Angelica, Eliza, and Peggy weave in and out of the story at vastly different points in their lives.

The musical covers a long timeline of the Schuyler sisters’ meetings with Alexander Hamilton, their developing relationships with him, and even their eventual deaths. Although the story compresses the timeline and makes many changes and omissions to the real historical figures, the events still sync up with the real Schuyler sisters’ lives.

Angelica, Eliza, and Peggy are all real people who interacted with Alexander Hamilton. The history that inspired Hamilton can determine how old the Schuyler sisters were during the major twists and turns of the hit musical.

Angelica, the oldest and boldest of the Schuyler sisters, starts the story in her 20s. During “A Winter’s Ball” in 1780, she was 24 years old. However, the timeline of her marriage diverges from the history. The real Angelica married John Church in 1777, before meeting Alexander, at the age of 21. In the musical, she does not marry until after the war when she would be in her late 20s, though the real Angelica did leave for Europe with her husband in 1783.

Angelica shows up only rarely after her marriage in Hamilton, as the musical does not cover Angelica’s later life. When she returns after the publication of the Reynolds Pamphlet in 1797 to lambast Hamilton, Angelica is already in her early 40s. She is not mentioned again until Eliza brings up her death in 1814 at the age of 58.

Eliza, as Alexander Hamilton’s wife, is the most central sister to the story, and the musical takes place over a long span of her life. She meets Hamilton at the ball at the age of 22, marrying him after a whirlwind romance at 23. The marriage hit the rocks as Hamilton’s affair with Maria Reynolds started in 1791, when Eliza was in her mid-30s, though it was not revealed until 1797 as Eliza turned 40.

In real life, Eliza and Alexander reconciled before Philip Hamilton’s death in a duel, but in the musical, Eliza decides to stay with Alexander after the loss of Philip in 1801. Eliza would have been 44 at the time of Philip’s death, and Hamilton’s death came only three years later in 1804, shortly before Eliza turned 47. As she explains in “Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story,” though, she lived another 50 years. Eliza died in 1854 at the age of 97.

Peggy Schuyler is seen only rarely in the musical, as her actress must change into Maria Reynolds for the second act. Although “The Schuyler Sisters” makes her seem like the quintessential little sister, she was only a year younger than Eliza. During her introduction in 1776, she was already 18. She would have been 21 to 22 during “A Winter’s Ball” and Eliza’s ensuing romance with Hamilton. She does not appear again, as Hamilton omits most of Peggy’s life, and she plays no role in the second act partly because Peggy Schuyler died in 1801 at the age of 42. The Schuyler sisters are an important part of Hamilton, but the musical takes a lot of dramatic license with the timeline of their lives.

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