In the colonial era, the area today known as the North Carolina Piedmont had never been well-governed. In the 1760s, farmers began to organize in protest against high taxes, unfair fees, and corrupt public officials. These protesters became known as “Regulators” because they wanted to regulate the colonial government. But what began with petitions and civil disobedience ended in a violent clash of militias at the Battle of Alamance in May 1771. There the Regulators were decisively defeated.
Was this the first battle of the Revolution or just a local uprising? Were the Regulators resisting oppression, or were they a violent mob trying to get out of paying their debts? In this chapter you’ll have the opportunity to read the words of the Regulators and their opponents and to decide for yourself.
- The Regulators
- Primary Source: George Sims' An Address to the People of Granville County
- Primary Source: The Regulators Organize
- Primary Source: Herman Husband and "Some grievous oppressions"
- Primary Source: Edmund Fanning Reports to Governor Tryon
- Primary Source: Orange County Inhabitants Petition Governor Tryon
- Primary Source: Songs of the Regulators
- The Cost of Tryon Palace
- Primary Source: Chaos in Hillsborough 1770
- Primary Source: An Act for Preventing Tumultuous and Riotous Assemblies
- Primary Source: An Authentick Relation of the Battle of Alamance
- Primary Source: Aftermath of the Battle of Alamance