“America’s First Republicans: Fendall’s Rebellion of 1660”

August 24, 2018
Friday, October 19, 2018 - 3:00pm to 4:30pm
Dulles Hall, Room 168
Noeleen McIlvenna

Presenter: Noeleen McIlvenna, Wright State University

Revolutionary eras are always marked by a rich and widespread public discourse on power, with a full spectrum of philosophies on offer. Just as in England, Maryland during the 1640s and 1650s saw all manner of people with every mix of concern over money, power and religion voice their feelings and take up political stances as each new constitutional crisis unfolded. The 1650s saw the arrival of more of Oliver's Army, reinforcing the strength of many who had rebelled in 1645. The arguments got convoluted sometimes and some individuals behaved cynically, using constitutional niceties to defend their wealth. But as the debate raged, so did the political education of all. And gradually the fog lifted to reveal that, if one wanted to protect one’s property, one’s economic opportunities, or one’s freedom to worship, one had to have access to the political process. Thomas Gerard's egalitarian neighbors saw the distinct possibility of a Commonwealth in Maryland. Josias Fendall and Thomas Gerard brought together many Marylanders in search of a meritocracy in what has become known as Fendall’s Rebellion.
 
Copies of Professor McIlvenna’s paper are available in 106 Dulles Hall, opposite the Receptionist’s Desk.  
 
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