Alexander Hamilton begins The Federalist No. 11 by explaining the importance of a Union to prospering commercial success and trade. He states that early commercial success and the "adventurous spirit "1 which distinguishes America in foreign trade, will be dangerous to the several maritime powers of Europe and threaten their existing trade advantages among the States. These European powers, Hamilton notes, will attempt to prevent us from interfering with the navigation of their naval fleets, capitalizing on the profits of our trade, and souring souring to greatness as a nation. He states that if the Union remained united, however, it would posses the ability to counteract such a policy by creating restricting regulations extending throughout the States. These specific policies would force foreign countries to bid against each other for access to our markets and allow us to secure favorable terms of trade with European powers. .
Hamilton then states that the second method to influence the actions of European nations towards the United States would be to establish a strong federal navy. In order for a reputable navy to exist, it must first require an efficient government under a united Union. Hamilton provides the example that this specific strong naval power would be able to protect our foreign trade in the West-Indies, and over time be able to alter European competitions in this part of the world to our advantage. He posits that a navy of the United States would certainly require the resources of the entire nation including: lumber, tar, pitch, turpentine and some iron, from the South; higher quality iron from the middle states; and seamen primarily selected from the Northern States. The absolute necessity of naval protection to our maritime commerce does not require a long explanation, no more of an explanation than of how that certain forms of trade are beneficial for the navy.