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Watch 10 Days That Unexpectedly Changed America online: Episode 10 Shays Rebellion: Americas First Civil War

With the American Revolution over, the farmers of Massachusetts were upset about growing debt and increasing taxes. Failure to repay debt often resulted in imprisonment in debtor's prisons, which angered many people. Upset about this, a farmer, Daniel Shays decided to form a group of rebels to rebel against the Massachusetts government. Shays' rebellion would grow to include over 9,000 rebels, and was able to close down many courthouses, which meant no one would be sent to debtor's prisons. When retired General George Washington heard about the rebellion, he, with the encouragement of Henry Knox, decided to come out of retirement and be more active in public life. The rebellion resulted in the reevaluation of the Articles of Confederation at the Constitutional Convention, where the US Constitution was finished, creating a new, stronger government.

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