Filed under: Uncategorized
I have been looking at scanned and digitally stored manuscripts of the War Department Papers project. The U.S. government from the Revolutionary War era Continental Congress, congress under the Articles of Confederation, and from 1789 onwards under the Constitution, had a “War Department” through the late 1940s. The War Department became the Department of the Army located under the Department of Defense.
I started out looking for materials about the “Daniel Shays’s Rebellion” of 1786-1787 in Massachusetts. If the rebels or insurgents had captured the Magazine at Springfield, Massachusetts, they could have taken 7,000 muskets, gunpowder, and other military equipment. “WHAT IF” is an interesting speculation. They were driven off by a state militia force. The incident was one of the “final straws” that got leading Americans and politicians to decided that the Articles of Confederation needed to be “amended” or “completely replaced”. The end result was a convention in Philadelphia that drafted our national Constitution.
I have transcribed 15 documents and am waiting to get a user name and password to send my work in to the WarDepartmentPapers project. I have worked on manuscripts from Thomas Jefferson, Henry Knox, Benjamin Lincoln, John Pierce, James Deblois, a letter to Johnathan Grant, James W. Henry, Samuel Hodgdon, and John Adams.
I have been looking through the documents from 1788, and have picked documents written by John Pierce, Rufus Putnam, Henry Knox, Oliver Wolcott, Jr., Benjamin Lincoln, and Josiah Harmar.
Contact me for more information about the War Department Papers project in general, or the mansucripts that I have transcribed. None of them are posted yet at the W D P website.