Alexander, William (1726–1783), an American Revolutionary War general. He was also known as Lord Stirling, a title he assumed in 1761, although his claim to the earldom of Stirling was later disapproved by the British House of Lords. In 1775 Alexander was commissioned a colonel of militia in New Jersey. In 1776 he directed the capture of a British transport off Sandy Hook, New Jersey. Promoted to brigadier general of the Continental Army in 1776 and major general in 1777, he commanded troops at the battles of Long Island, Brandywine, Germantown, and Monmouth. In 1778 he helped expose the Conway Cabal, a plot to remove George Washington as commander in chief.
In the dark of night on Dec. 16, 1773, residents of Boston poured more than 90,000 pounds of tea into the harbor. But they weren't trying to set a world record for the most cups of tea made at one time. They were protesting the British government.
President Jefferson sent a couple of his representatives over to France to buy the city of New Orleans. What he got was the Louisiana Purchase, a patch of land that nearly doubled the size of the young nation.