Sunday, August 23, 2015

Quote of the Week--A different George

The year 1791 brought the "Whiskey Rebellion" in opposition to a federal tax. The main insurgency occurred in Western Pennsylvania. President George Washington, Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton, and Virginia governor Light Horse Harry Lee set out with the militia to bring the insurgents to heel.
"The military expedition met little overt resistance in the mutinous regions. . . . At times, the behavior of the rowdy, heavy-drinking soldiers was more worrisome than that of the whiskey rebels, and at least two innocent civilians were killed by militia.  Washington set an important precedent by having these soldiers tried in civilian, not military, courts."
Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton, Penguin Press, N.Y., 2004, at 476.

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