The lackluster response to the Annapolis meeting might have been repeated the following spring, but for the violence that erupted in Massachusetts over the fall and winter. To Hamilton, Shays' Rebellion was the direct and inevitable result of the weak national government. The attempt by Massachusetts to pay off its war debts on its own had resulted in a crushing tax burden, especially for farmers unable to produce the required gold or silver currency. The consequence, in Hamilton's mind, was predictable: lawless mobs, assaults on property, and anarchy.
For men like Alexander Hamilton and James Madison, the actions of Daniel Shays, Luke Day and other insurgents could not have come at a better time. Coupled