Re: [Distillers] Esters (was) Re: Rum musings
- --- waljaco <waljaco@...> wrote:
> Bengal Rum was imported into the early AustralianFrom wikipedia...
> colony - became a
> form of currency. Look up Rum Rebellion.
Bligh and MacArthur's interests clashed in a number of
ways. Bligh stopped Macarthur from cheaply
distributing large quantities of wine to the Corps. He
also halted Macarthur's allegedly illegal importation
of brewing stills.
"The Rum Rebellion has slipped into historical
oblivion because it is widely misunderstood. It is
popular belief that the autocratic Bligh was removed
because he threatened the huge profits that were being
made from trading in spirits by the officers of the
NSW Corps and by businessmen such as John Macarthur.
This view suggests it was nothing more than a squabble
between equally unsavoury parties. The conflict had
greater depth than such squabbles. Essentially it was
the culmination of a long-running tussle for power
between government and entrepreneurs, a fight over the
future and the nature of the colony. The early
governors wanted to keep NSW as a large-scale open
prison, with a primitive economy based on yeomen
ex-convicts and run by government fiat."
Duffy goes on to say that the Rebellion was not
thought of at the time as being about Rum:
"... almost no one at the time of the rebellion
thought it was about rum. Bligh tried briefly to give
it that spin, to smear his opponents, but there was no
evidence for it and he moved on. Many years later, in
1855, an English Quaker named William Howitt published
a popular history of Australia. Like many
teetotallers, he was keen to blame alcohol for all the
problems in the world. Howitt took Bligh's side and
invented the phrase Rum Rebellion, and it has stuck
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