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  • Shays’ Rebellion: The American Revolution’s Final Battle

    Shays’ Rebellion: The American Revolution’s Final Battle

    From 1786 to 1787, only three years after the Revolutionary War, the state of Massachusetts was gripped by an armed rebellion as Daniel Shays and Luke Day led a revolt against the local government. Shays’ Rebellion has often been dismissed as a small and insignificant uprising by a rabble of poor indebted farmers, but historian Leonard L. Richards’ in his book Shays’s Rebellion: The American Revolution’s Final Battle presents a very different thesis. Following the rebels’ defeat, each man was […]

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  • The Wealth of Nations: A Case for Free Markets

    The Wealth of Nations: A Case for Free Markets

    Adam Smith’s Revolutionary Economic Theory in Wealth of Nations In 1776, Adam Smith penned An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations in order to discover the best economic policy a nation should follow. Ultimately, he concluded that a free-market system (in which the government had limited intervention in the marketplace) would lead to the most productive nation. Developing such revolutionary theories as the division of labor, the invisible hand, and freedom of trade, Smith successfully challenged mercantilist ideas […]

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  • Plunkitt of Tammany Hall

    Plunkitt of Tammany Hall

    “He Seen His Opportunities, and He Took ‘Em” The Blessings and Curses of the Urban Political Machine William L. Riordon’s Plunkitt of Tammany Hall compiles numerous talks that New York Senator George Washington Plunkitt gave in defense of his political career in the 1800s as a ward boss in the political machine known as Tammany Hall. While progressive reformers decried this urban political machine as a cancer on American democracy, Plunkitt presents the thesis that the machine’s existence is justified because it […]

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  • Benjamin & William Franklin: Father and Son, Patriot and Loyalist

    Benjamin & William Franklin: Father and Son, Patriot and Loyalist

    Sheila L. Skemp’s Benjamin and William Franklin attempts to disprove the opinion that because Loyalists and Patriots during the Revolutionary War had divergent political views, they can simply be categorized into two distinct parties: “good guys and bad guys.” Using the accounts of Benjamin Franklin (a Patriot) and William Franklin (a Loyalist), Skemp demonstrates how the distinction between the two parties was not so black and white.

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