the quartet orchestrating the second american revolution 1783 1789.pdf

But it was now clear beyond any doubt that very few

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obligation to support a national fiscal policy. But it was now clear beyond any doubt that very few Americans shared that assumption. “I hope my successor will be more fortunate than I have been,” Morris explained to Washington upon resigning, “and that our glorious Revolution may be crowned by those Acts of Justice, without which the greatest human Glory is but the Shadow of Shade.” 52 As if to underline the growing sense of dissolution, when the provisional treaty arrived in Congress, a quorum did not exist to approve it, and no one was sure who had the authority to sign it as that body’s official representative. A dramatic sequel to this silliness then occurred in June, when three hundred soldiers from the Lancaster and Philadelphia barracks, dissatisfied with the Morris notes and demanding their back pay, refused to stack their weapons and instead marched on the Pennsylvania State House, where the Congress was sitting. Enjoying the support of the local residents, who dispensed free alcohol to the troops as they surrounded the statehouse, for several hours they peered into the windows at the delegates, shouted obscenities, and aimed their muskets at any delegate who protested the demonstration. 53 Though rowdy, the troops remained nonviolent and eventually marched back to their barracks to the cheers of the assembled crowd. Hamilton was especially incensed at being the target of intimidation—in his highly refined code of honor, the troops had challenged his manhood. He wrote a blistering letter to John Dickinson, currently serving as president of the Pennsylvania Council, inquiring in belligerent fashion why the Pennsylvania militia had not been called out to disperse the mutinous troops. Dickinson explained that the militia might very well have joined the mutiny. This was probably true, but it did not satisfy Hamilton, who drafted a resolution, endorsed by the full Congress, that the inability of the Pennsylvania government to provide security for the delegates meant that the seat of the American government should move to New Jersey. 54 That decision initiated a long odyssey for the Congress, first to Princeton, then to Trenton, then to Annapolis, and finally to New York, creating the impression of an itinerant traveler moving from boardinghouse to boardinghouse with no real home of his own. Hamilton bemoaned the appearance of such a transitory body, especially in the eyes of European powers already convinced that the infant American republic was likely to die in the cradle. 55 But by midsummer 1783 Hamilton himself had given up the ghost. “There is so little disposition either in or out of Congress to give solidity to our national system,” he explained to Nathanael Greene, “that there is no motive for a man to lose his time in the public service…. Experience must convince us that our present establishments are Utopian before we shall be ready to part with them for better.” Not the kind of man to waste his time in noble but futile causes, Hamilton believed that he had done his best, just as Morris had done his best, but America was not yet ready for what they wanted. He was going back to
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