Rum Rebellion

The only military coup in Australian history, named the “Rum Rebellion” by the Victorians, and known by contemporary loyalists as the Usurpation, resulted with a two year period of republicanism.

Treason? And yet the perpetrators, starting with Macarthur and Johnston, lived to a rich, old age, while their victims, from the Governor down to his lowly Hawkesbury district defenders, rarely recovered what they had lost.

This was a time of high drama and extreme personalities. Even today, these events are viewed from ideological perspectives, but we will do our best to sieve out the strands of meaning.

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