Whiskey Rebellion

Extracted from
Calendar of Virginia State Papers
Volume VII p. 265-266

Proclamation By The Governor Of Virginia
August 19, 1794

Whereas I have received information that a banditti from the Western parts of Pennsylvania have in defiance of law and order, passed into this Commonwealth, and by threats and other evil doings compelled an officer of the United States living in Morgan Town, in the County of Monongalia, to abandon his home and seek personal safety by flight; And whereas I have reason to believe that the said banditti are a part of that deluded combination of men described in the President's proclamation of the 7th day of this present month, who, forgetful of all obligations human and divine, seem intent only on rapine and anarchy, and therefore endeavour by their emissaries and other illegal means to seduce the good people of this Commonwealth inhabiting the Country bordering on the state of Pennsylvania, to unite with them in schemes and measure tending to destroy the tranquility and order which so happily prevails, and thereby to convert the blessings we so eminently enjoy under our free and equal government into the most afflicting miseries which can possibly befall the human race.

To arrest these wicked designs; to uphold the majesty of the law; to preserve our fellow citizens from evil and our country from disgrace, I have thought proper, by and with the advice of the council of State, to issue this my proclamation calling on all officers, civil and military, to exercise with zeal, dilligence and firmness, every legal power vested in them respectively for the purpose of detecting and bringing to trial every offender or offenders in the premises.

And I do moreover specially require and enjoin that all persons coming into this Commonwealth from that part of our sister State, at present so unhappily distracted, by particularly watched, and if they shall be found disseminating their wicked and pernicious doctrines, or in any way exciting a spirit of disobedience to government, thereby violating the peace and dignity of this Commonwealth, that they be immediately apprehended and dealt with according to law.

Given under my hand as Governor, and under the seal of the Commonwealth, at Richmond, this twentieth day of August, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and ninety-four, and of the commonwealth the nineteenth.

Henry Lee

Exploration, Settlement and Conflict (1600-1799)