Violence and Control of the American Revolution: Understanding Committees of Safety and their Opposition to Scottish Loyalists

Tatum Turner Butler University
Faculty Sponsor(s): Paul Hanson Butler University
One of the most heated debates throughout colonial America was whether or not a person should side with the British empire or the rising revolution for freedom. This project will examine the dramatic measures taken by patriots to ensure the completion of their revolution, through the use of safety committees instituted by the Continental Congress in 1774. These committees were created to keep the peace and enact congressional decrees in local areas. However, there were few regulations in place for the committees. The argument may be made that the committees of safety were an early form of police brutality against minority populations. This project will focus on an example of the committees' misuse of power in North Carolina. The North Carolina safety committees specifically targeted Scottish Highland loyalists. One of the goals of this project is to understand the role and methods used by the North Carolina committees of safety against Scottish Highland loyalists. Primary sources such as court documents, newspapers, and letters will be used to understand these methods. In addition, the issue of why Highland Scots were targeted will be discussed within the context of Scottish political history. Primary and secondary sources concerning the Highland Clearances, and the failed Jacobite rebellion will be used to understand colonial discrimination against the Scots. These two historical occurrences will work together to illustrate an example of the violent upbringings of the United States.
Oral Presentation

When & Where

10:45 AM
Jordan Hall 203