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The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion

 
Lies & Alibis
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02/02/2013 04:15 PM
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The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
[link to en.wikipedia.org]

The Whiskey Rebellion demonstrated that the new national government had the willingness and ability to suppress violent resistance to its laws. The whiskey excise remained difficult to collect, however. The events contributed to the formation of political parties in the United States, a process already underway. The whiskey tax was repealed after Thomas Jefferson's Republican Party, which opposed Hamilton's Federalist Party, came to power in 1800.

Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 04:23 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
After the war Neville was an inspector of revenue under the excise laws, which the newly formed United States Congress imposed on distilled spirits to help pay for the cost of the Revolutionary War. There were two methods of paying the whiskey excise: paying a flat charge or paying by the gallon. The tax effectively favored large distillers, most of whom were based in the east, who produced whiskey in volume and could afford the flat fee. Western farmers who owned small stills did not usually operate them at full capacity, so they ended up paying a higher tax per gallon. Thus, large producers ended up paying a tax of about 6 cents per gallon, while small producers were taxed at about 9 cents per gallon.

[link to en.wikipedia.org]
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 04:27 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
[link to www.nps.gov]

In 1790, the new national government of the United States was attempting to establish itself. Because the government had assumed the debts incurred by the colonies during the Revolution the government was deep in debt. During the 1791 winter session of Congress both houses approved a bill that put an excise tax on all distilled spirits. United States Secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton, proposed the bill to help prevent the national debt from growing. Loud protests from all districts of the new nation soon followed. These protests were loudest in the western counties of Pennsylvania.

The smaller producers, who were generally in the western counties, had a very different perspective of the tax. To them the tax was abhorrent. The frontier farmers detested the excise because it was only payable in cash, something rare on the western frontier. Due to the great effort required to transport any product over the mountains back to the markets of the East, farmers felt it made much more sense to transport the distilled spirits of their grain rather than the raw grain itself.
Anonymous Coward
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02/02/2013 04:27 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
I prefer 1971
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 04:28 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
taxes
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 04:49 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
Continued from Wikipedia...

The whiskey excise was immediately controversial, with many people on the frontier arguing the tax unfairly targeted westerners. Whiskey was a popular drink, and farmers often supplemented their incomes by operating small stills. Farmers living west of the Appalachian Mountains distilled their excess grain into whiskey, which was easier and more profitable to transport over the mountains than the more cumbersome grain. A whiskey tax would make western farmers less competitive with eastern grain producers.Additionally, cash was always in short supply on the frontier, so whiskey often served as a medium of exchange. For poorer people who were paid in whiskey, the excise was essentially an income tax that wealthier easterners did not pay.

Appeals to nonviolent resistance were unsuccessful. On September 11, 1791, a recently appointed tax collector named Robert Johnson was tarred and feathered by a disguised gang in Washington County. A man sent by officials to serve court warrants to Johnson's attackers was whipped, tarred, and feathered. Because of these and other violent attacks, the tax went uncollected in 1791 and early 1792. The attackers modeled their actions on the protests of the American Revolution. Supporters of the excise argued there was a difference between taxation without representation in colonial America, and a tax laid by the elected representatives of the American people.
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 05:55 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
The Rebellion raised the question of what kinds of protests were permissible under the new Constitution. Legal historian Christian G. Fritz argued, even after ratification of the Constitution, there was not yet a consensus about sovereignty in the United States. Federalists believed the government was sovereign because it had been established by the people, so radical protest actions, which were permissible during the American Revolution, were no longer legitimate. But the Whiskey Rebels and their defenders believed the Revolution had established the people as a "collective sovereign", and the people had the collective right to change or challenge the government through extraconstitutional means.
Anonymous Coward
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02/02/2013 06:04 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
George Washington threatened to kick their asses and they pussied out.
chowan

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02/02/2013 06:06 PM

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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
very interesting

5 stars and a bump
sheell be right mate
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 07:18 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
An economic depression cast a deep pall over much of the new nation early in the 1780s.

Along with attempts by many states at heavy taxation to repay their war debts, there were
widespread demands by creditors in the form of debt suits and resulting farm foreclosures.

Three consecutive bad crop years hurt southern farmers. The common people–overwhelmingly
farmers, laborers, and artisans, who had received almost-worthless debt certificates for their
arduous army service and had little else but their brawn, farms, animals, and tools–could not pay.

A merchant from Pittsburgh lamented, in 1787, that “Very few in this Town can procure Money to go to market.
And as to pay ... a Debt it is out of the question.”


That same summer, as the Constitutional Convention was meeting nearby, Philadelphia merchant Stephen Collins noted
that “times have grown so bad, money so scarce that amazing quantities of real estate of every kind are selling at both public and private sale.” Similar conditions prevailed everywhere in the new nation.
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/02/2013 07:51 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
The noted Revolutionary War slogan “no taxation without representation” largely referred
to excise taxes. English rural resistance to excise taxation had been fierce for centuries, since
such taxes hit “the poor, the property-less, and the disenfranchised” the hardest and were
“economically devastating to farmers and small producers.” (Excises are usually called “internal
taxes” in English protest literature, since excise taxes always replaced “external” taxes or duties
on imports, which fell heaviest upon merchants and consumers.)

Scotch-Irish settlers, prominent in Appalachia and especially around Pittsburgh, had produced
much opposition to excise taxes when they had been English subjects on the other side of the Atlantic.
Pennsylvanians had defeated a state excise tax in the 1780s through stout local resistance,
and they almost uniformly refused to pay the new federal tax on whiskey.
The whole frontier was upset about the tax.


Similar violent resistance marked attempted enforcement of the Hamilton tax in Maryland,
Kentucky, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. The excise and its centralized
collection represented, in real terms, that loss of local power, that distant tyranny which the
Revolution had been fought over.


[link to colonialseminar.uga.edu]
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/03/2013 08:19 AM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
George Washington threatened to kick their asses and they pussied out.
 Quoting: Anonymous Coward 30474188


Yes, 13,000 for a non violent rebellion, that in the end had two man convicted of not paying their taxes....

[link to www.lewrockwell.com]



Notes DiLorenzo: "The rank-and-file soldiers [in the army assembled by Washington] may have been mostly conscripts, but many of the officers who accompanied Hamilton and Washington to Pennsylvania were `from the ranks of the creditor aristocracy in the seaboard cities.... These officers were eager to enforce collection of the whiskey tax so that the value of their government bond holdings could be enhanced and secured."

The punitive expedition against the Whiskey Rebels illustrated "why Hamilton was such a vociferous proponent of a standing army," writes DiLorenzo. "He wanted a standing army of tax collectors. This is how King George III collected stamp taxes and other levies from the American colonists prior to the Revolution, and it is how Hamilton intended to collect his whiskey tax" and any other impositions he could devise.
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/03/2013 09:47 AM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
Just noticed it's 100 years to the day today,
that the Sixteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified...

February 3, 1913
February 3, 2013


[link to en.wikipedia.org]
Anonymous Coward
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02/03/2013 09:54 AM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
Just noticed it's 100 years to the day today,
that the Sixteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution was ratified...

February 3, 1913
February 3, 2013


[link to en.wikipedia.org]
 Quoting: Lies & Alibis


Anonymous Coward
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02/03/2013 06:19 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
Oh Shit
Lies & Alibis (OP)

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02/24/2013 01:21 PM
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Re: The 1791 Whiskey Rebellion
Did you know Mr. #1 POTUS George Washington owned a distillery himself?

[link to www.mountvernon.org]

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