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To the Honourable the Governor, Senate, and Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

The PETITION of Robin Hood--- humbly sheweth.

THAT although your petitioner has annihilated the Court of justice in the County of Hampshire, and has thereby freed himself from all danger of the goal, and of being accused of deceiving the honest goaler to get out goal, when confined in it; yet he still finds he is in want of many of the good things of life, many of which he is entirely destitute of, and others he enjoys in a very scanty proportion, when compared with his desires.

Your petitioner therefore, prays your Honours to take his present unhappy circumstances into your wise consideration and grant him to live without fear of his conduct being condemned and he punished,---may all people believe he has acted honestly and for the public good, and be thereby induced to improve him in all matters of any consequence to the destruction of society and mutual compact,---and may his private fortune be enlarged, his house become large and elegant, and his furniture grow proportionate to such a dwelling,---may his farm be increased to a large and grand size,---may his wells and springs become rum (Jamaica spirits I mean) and his large brooks the most cool and pleasant water,---may his oaks produce sugar by the loaf, and the shrubs on his plains lemons,- may his fields produce the finest of wheat, and his valleys the fittest of pasture, which may give him beef equal to the best from the stall,---may his garden bring forth every thing necessary for kitchen use, and to please the eye, may his apple trees replenish his cellar with the best Madeira wine and never be exhausted,---may all other trees on his farm produce playing cards instead of leaves, and he always have success in using them---and as the necessaries of life are all he wants, may he never more than he has been used to be troubled with cash, the root of all evil, but everything come forth upon his own farm as he wants, and his neighbours be induced to collect for nothing,---may the merchant and mechanic provide him, free of all cost, every article for necessary convenience and elegance, whether in cloathing for himself and family, or in carriages for show and parade,--- and may your Honours enact that he shall not pay the taxes already assessed upon him and his estate, and that hereafter none shall be assessed upon him and his estate; or as your Honours shall think convenient, grant him such relief in the premises whether by constant rain, hail or snow, or in any other full, ample or certain way as shall be sufficient to all his wishes, as in duty bound shall ever pray.


Sept. 1786.

(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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There is currently no available "Beginner" label. The following is the default level label: Friends of government like the author of this article often used satire to discredit Regulator demands for debtor relief and government reform. Robin Hood stole from the rich and gave to the poor. This "Robin Hood" petitions the government of Massachusetts for financial assistance as his standard of living is not as high as he would like. He also asks that he be pardoned for taking part in anti-government activities and that his property be free from taxes. He also wishes his well to turn to rum, his trees to produce white sugar, his fields to produce the best wheat and beef, his apple trees to produce Madeira wine and his other trees to grow playing cards place of leaves. William Butler began publishing the Hampshire Gazette on September 6, 1786, in Northampton, Massachusetts. Butler's goal was to inform the public about the issues pertaining to the ongoing conflicts in the western part of the state. The contents of the Hampshire Gazette reveal the pro-government bias of its publisher, William Butler.


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"Petition of Robin Hood" article published in the Hampshire Gazette

publisher   Hampshire Gazette
author   Robin Hood
date   Sep 13, 1786
location   Northampton, Massachusetts
height   4.0"
width   2.0"
process/materials   printed paper, ink
item type   Periodicals/Newspaper
accession #   #L04.122

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See Also...

Bill from Deerfield Selectmen for Military Supplies used in Shays' Rebellion

County Court House, Greenfield, Mass.

Tax receipt of Justin Hitchcock

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