Braddock's Field
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member Kordite
N 40° 24.179 W 079° 51.797
17T E 596458 N 4473106
Quick Description: Market at Jones Ave., North Braddock.
Location: Pennsylvania, United States
Date Posted: 12/4/2005 11:04:09 AM
Waymark Code: WM4GJ
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member The Leprechauns
Views: 73

Long Description:
The marker reads: "Braddock's Field: Known as the high tide of the Whiskey Rebellion, the rendezvous of militias from Pennsylvania's four western counties took place here, August 1-2, 1794. This was the largest armed resistance to the national government between the Revolutionary and Civil War eras. Although this demonstration by 5,000 to 7,000 men was essentially peaceful, it signaled to the government a need for military force to suppress the revolt."

One of the steps taken to pay down the huge debt that the government had incurred fighting the Revolution wwas a tax imposed in 1791 on distilled spirits. Large producers were assessed a tax of six cents a gallon. However, smaller producers, most of whom were Scottish or Irish descent located in the more remote western areas, were taxed at a higher rate of nine cents a gallon. From Pennsylvania to Georgia, the western counties engaged in a campaign of harassment of the federal tax collectors. In the summer of 1794, George Washington and Alexander Hamilton, remembering Shays' Rebellion from just eight years before, decided to make Pennsylvania a testing ground for federal authority. Washington ordered federal marshals to serve court orders requiring the tax protesters to appear in federal district court.

By the summer of 1794, the protests became a rebellion; one group disguised as women assaulted a collector, cropped his hair, coated him with tar and feathers, and stole his horse. Other forms of defiance included robbing the mail, stopping court proceedings, and threatening an assault on Pittsburgh. On August 7, 1794, Washington invoked the Militia Law of 1792 to summon the militias of Pennsylvania, Virginia and several states. The rebel force they sought was likewise composed of Pennsylvanians, Virginians, and possibly men from other states.

The militia force of 13,000 men was organized, roughly the size of the entire army in the Revolutionary War. Under the personal command of Washington, Hamilton, and Revolutionary War hero Henry "Lighthorse Harry" Lee the army marched to Western Pennsylvania (to what is now Monongahela, Pennsylvania) and quickly suppressed the revolt. The rebels afterwards hid in the woods, but twenty barefoot civilians were captured and paraded down Market Street in Philadelphia. The men were imprisoned, where one died, while two were convicted of treason and sentenced to be hanged. Washington however pardoned them on the grounds that one was a "simpleton" and the other "insane."

The whiskey tax was repealed in 1802, having been largely unenforceable outside of Western Pennsylvania, and never having been collected with much success.
Marker Name: Braddock's Field

County: Allegheny

Date Dedicated: 09/12/1994

Marker Type: Roadside

Location: Jones Ave., North Braddock

Category: Military, Government & Politics, American Revolution, Whiskey Rebellion

Website: [Web Link]

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