Describe in detail the reasons for, who participated in, what happened during, and the consequences of Bacon’s Rebellion. Discuss in detail at least TWO big themes that will continue to appear in...

Describe in detail the reasons for, who participated in, what happened during, and the consequences of Bacon’s Rebellion. Discuss in detail at least TWO big themes that will continue to appear in U.S. History that were exhibited by this rebellion. Explain how one of those themes is demonstrated in the events that led to the American Revolution.

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teachsuccess eNotes educator| Certified Educator

We'll start by addressing the first part of your question.

Bacon's Rebellion (1676–1677)

Participants: Nathaniel Bacon, Governor Sir William Berkeley, colonists loyal to Bacon, and colonists loyal to Sir William Berkeley.

Reasons:

The conflict between the working classes and the ruling elite in the Virginia colony stemmed from declining tobacco prices, higher taxes, and increased attacks from adversarial Native American groups.

Bacon and his men accused Sir William Berkeley and the Virginia gentry class of exempting themselves from the higher taxes levied upon Virginia's civilian population. The group also accused the governor of doing little to stem the tide of "invasions, robberies, and murders" committed by antagonistic Native American tribes.

Meanwhile, the Navigation Acts restricted the sale of tobacco to non-English merchants. Since Virginia farmers could only sell their tobacco to English merchants, the price of tobacco fell, leading to lower profits for the Virginian working classes.

Meanwhile, Berkeley defended his actions by arguing that not all Native American tribes were adversarial and that Bacon's actions were destabilizing to the colony. Berkeley worried that the tenuous relationship between the Virginian government and peaceful Native American tribes would splinter in the light of Bacon's demands and actions.  

What happened: Bacon and his men burned Jamestown and ransacked the homes belonging to Virginia's gentry class. They also attacked the Occoneechee, Tutelo, and Saponi Indian tribes, although these tribes were not responsible for the attacks on Virginian frontiersmen and their families.

Consequences: Bacon and his men lost the battle with Berkeley's forces. In the end, Bacon died from "bloody flux" (or bloody diarrhea), and Berkeley had leaders of Bacon's group executed.

Two themes concerning Bacon's rebellion that continued to appear in U.S. history:

Some examples are: the right of the working class to self-determination or personal agency, the right of the people to have representation in government, the right of the disenfranchised to petition the government for "a redress of grievances," the right to private property, and so on.

How one theme is demonstrated in the events that led up to the American Revolution:

Here, you can discuss the Boston Tea Party as the direct result of the Stamp Act and the Townshend Acts. Then, discuss the Intolerable Acts (Coercive Acts) and how these laws hardened the resolve of the colonists to fight for American independence. Please refer to my examples of themes to use with this section.