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Shay’s Rebellion 1786-1787. The Critical Period The 1780s are considered the “Critical Period” in American history – A new nation with an inadequate system.

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Presentation on theme: "Shay’s Rebellion 1786-1787. The Critical Period The 1780s are considered the “Critical Period” in American history – A new nation with an inadequate system."— Presentation transcript:

1 Shay’s Rebellion

2 The Critical Period The 1780s are considered the “Critical Period” in American history – A new nation with an inadequate system of government. Big problems face the United States – Economic – Political – foreign policy

3 Problem 1 Facing government bankruptcy – The nation owes $160 million in war debts – Congress had no power to tax – States rarely sent in half of Congress’ requested amounts of money – National currency has no value Congress proposes a 5% duty on imports to raise revenue. – Rhode Island blocks the measure

4 Problem 2 Spain closes the Mississippi River to American commerce in 1784 – Conspires with Westerners to acquire the area that becomes Kentucky and Tennessee. Britain has military posts in the Northwest – Violates the Treaty of Paris – Tried to convince Vermont to become a Canadian Province

5 Problem 3 The Revolution disrupted the American economies – England prohibited American agriculture to be sold in the West Indies – After the war Massachusetts shipbuilders built 1/5 of the ships they had built in 1775 – States protect local interests by imposing tariffs

6 Farmers in Massachusetts Agricultural and shipbuilding industries face difficult economic challenges. The state also voted to pay off the war debt in just three years  Taxes increase more than 60 percent

7 Farmers in Massachusetts Demand cuts in property taxes Want new laws to postpone farm foreclosures Eastern Mass. Creditors convince the state government to reject the new laws that would aid the farmers

8 Western farmers interests versus Eastern Creditors

9 Farmers in Massachusetts Local courts begin seizing property of farmers – Farm implements – Furniture – Clothing Many are war veterans Thousands of farmers rebel and shutdown the Northampton County Court. Easterners raise 5,000 pounds to send an army led by Benjamin Lincoln to end the rebellion

10 Shay’s Rebellion Shay and his followers attack a federal arsenal at Springfield – They get driven off by the army and are routed The Massachusetts government also grants: – Tax relief – Amnesty to rebel leaders The rebellion convinced national leaders that a strong central government is needed

11 Video Link


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