Allies in the War Against the Barbary Pirates
When Jefferson declared war on the Barbary Pirates, the U.S. had been independent for less than 18 years. Between 1783 and 1794, we didn’t have an army, much less a navy.Read More
The Massacre That Wasn’t
While his men loaded their muskets and fixed their bayonets, Preston yelled at the crowd to disperse. His shouts were met with more insults, stones, and snowballs.Read More
The Vice Admiralty Act of 1768 Led to the Fourth Amendment
“Writs of assistance” were authorized by the Vice Admiralty Act of 1768 as the basis for issuing a search warrant. These writs did not require any evidence or proof of suspicion that a crime had been committed to be presented to the judge. The writs gave the court’s own officers wide latitude when they searched an individual’s property.Read More
Who Were the Sons of Liberty?
Oddly enough, opponents to the Stamp Act (and later the Intolerable Acts of 1773) were spurred on by an Irish MP Isaac Barré’s speech in Parliament on February 6th, 1765. Barré agreed that the Colonists should not be forced to pay taxes on which they did not vote approval.Read More
The Price of Tea
A three pence/pound tax was built into the act that required the tax to be paid once the tea landed in the Thirteen Colonies. Essentially, the act shifted the payment of the tax onto the actual buyer of the tea.Read More
When Did the American Revolution Really Start?
The war left the British treasury empty. As it had done in the past, Parliament increased taxes on its citizens residing in England, but it was not nearly enough. The British Parliament passed five pieces of legislation known Townshend Acts which targeted citizens in the Thirteen Colonies who were reluctant to abide by England’s restrictive trade practices and tax laws for which they had no say in their creation.Read More
The Necessity of Powder
When the revolution broke out, there was only one “large” gunpowder mill in the U.S. that could provide quality gunpowder in any quantity. Located in Frankford, Pennsylvania, the mill could produce only a fraction of what was needed.Read More
Brown Bess Meets the Pennsylvania Rifle
They also had another innovation we take for granted. The gunsmiths added a rear sight which the shooter could line up with the front sight before he pulled the triggerRead More
The Hessian Nanny State
Every year, men between the ages 16 and 30 were mustered in their town square for possible induction into Hesse-Kassel’s army. There were formal exemptions based on the needs of the state, but if one wasn’t gainfully employed, you were drafted along with doctors and those convicted of crimes. During the American Revolution, 7% of the 300,000 citizens of Hesse-Kassel were in the army, either being trained or on garrison duty or deployed in the service of King George III.Read More
What Were the Hessians Paid?
The troops from Hesse-Kassel and the others were known for their discipline and fighting ability. During the 17th and 18th Century, German soldiers from one principality often fought those from another.Read More