Bacon's Rebellion was an armed rebellion held by Virginia settlers that took place in It was the first rebellion in the North American colonies in which discontented frontiersmen took part a somewhat similar uprising in Maryland involving John Coode and Josias Fendall took place shortly afterward. The alliance between European indentured servants and Africans a mix of indentured, enslaved, and free Blacks disturbed the colonial upper class. They responded by hardening the racial caste of slavery in an attempt to divide the two races from subsequent united uprisings with the passage of the Virginia Slave Codes of Starting in the s, as colonists began to settle the Northern Neck frontier, then known as Chicacoan Secocowon , some Doeg, Patawomeck and Rappahannock began moving into the region as well and joined local tribes in disputing the settlers' claims to land and resources. In July , the colonists declared war on them. Modern historians have suggested that the rebellion was a power play by Bacon against Berkeley and his favoritism towards certain members of the court. While Bacon was on the court, he was not within Berkeley's inner circle of council members and disagreed with him on many issues. Bacon's followers used the rebellion as an effort to gain government recognition of the shared interests among all social classes of the colony in protecting the "commonality" and advancing its welfare. Thousands of Virginians from all classes including those in indentured servitude and races rose up in arms against Berkeley, chasing him from Jamestown and ultimately torching the settlement. The rebellion was first suppressed by a few armed merchant ships from London whose captains sided with Berkeley and the loyalists. When Sir William Berkeley refused to retaliate against the Native Americans, farmers gathered around at the report of a new raiding party. Nathaniel Bacon arrived with a quantity of brandy; after it was distributed, he was elected leader. Against Berkeley's orders, the group struck south until they came to the Occaneechi people. After convincing the Occaneechi warriors to leave and attack the Susquehannock , Bacon and his men followed by killing most of the Occaneechi men, women, and children remaining at the village. Upon their return, they discovered that Berkeley had called for new elections to the Burgesses to better address the Native American raids. The recomposed House of Burgesses enacted a number of sweeping reforms known as Bacon's Laws. Bacon was not serving his duty in the House; rather, he was at his plantation miles away. It limited the powers of the governor and restored suffrage rights to landless freemen. After passage of these laws, Nathaniel Bacon arrived with followers in Jamestown to demand a commission to lead militia against the Native Americans. The governor, however, refused to yield to the pressure. When Bacon had his men take aim at Berkeley, he responded by "baring his breast" to Bacon and told Bacon to shoot him. Seeing that the governor would not be moved, Bacon then had his men take aim at the assembled burgesses, who quickly granted Bacon his commission. Bacon had earlier been promised a commission before he retired to his estate if he maintained "good" behavior for two weeks. While Bacon was at Jamestown with his small army, eight colonists were killed on the frontier in Henrico County from where he marched owing to a lack of manpower on the frontier. On July 30, , Bacon and his army issued the " Declaration of the People ". It leveled several accusations against Berkeley: [12]. After months of conflict, Bacon's forces, numbering men, moved to Jamestown , besieging the town as it was occupied by Berkeley's forces. Bacon's men captured and burned to the ground the colonial capital on September Outnumbered, Berkeley retreated across the river. Before an English naval squadron led by Thomas Larimore [15] could arrive to aid Berkeley and his forces, Bacon died from dysentery on October The rebellion did not last long after that. Berkeley launched a series of successful amphibious attacks across the Chesapeake Bay and defeated the rebels. His forces defeated the small pockets of insurgents spread across the Tidewater. Thomas Grantham, captain of the ship Concord cruising the York River, [18] used cunning and force to disarm the rebels.

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