What Are The Causes Of Shay's Rebellion

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Shay’s Rebellion Many farmers in the newly settled areas of central and eastern Massachusetts suffered from high debt as they tried to establish new farms. Unlike some of the other state legislatures, Massachusetts did not pass pro-debtor laws such as forgiving debt or printing more paper money. Instead, they had local sheriffs seize property and farms and place those farmers that could not afford to pay their debts into prison. This led to the first armed rebellion in the post-Revolutionary United States. The protestors believed that they were protecting the “good of the commonwealth” and opposing the “tyrannical government in the Massachusetts state” (Keene 2013). This rebellion affected many people in differing ways. The events that unfolded in Massachusetts alarmed many people, including George Washington, and prompted the Philadelphia Convention. Here, fifty five delegates from twelve different states convened to discuss their thoughts on the Articles of Confederation. It was clear to them that the Articles of Confederation presented an inadequate…show more content…
In a letter to James Madison, Jefferson writes “I hold it that a little rebellion now and then is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical. Unsuccessful rebellions, indeed, generally establish the encroachments on the rights of the people which have produced them. An observation of this truth should render honest republican governors so mild in their punishment of rebellions as not to discourage them too much. It is a medicine necessary for the sound health of government” (Vitale). Jefferson was not concerned about the rebellion and unlike other leaders of The Republic, he believes that people have the right to express their objections against the government, even if those objections might take the form of violent
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