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Joseph Stebbins (1749-1816) was the Captain of a company of Deerfield, Massachusetts, militia when war broke out between England and her North American colonies in 1775. Stebbins became a symbol of revolutionary valor and zeal to the town's later inhabitants. Stebbins opposed Shays' Rebellion, an uprising by some people in Massachusetts against the policies of the Massachusetts legislature. The Massachusetts government rewarded Stebbins' support by promoting him to lieutenant colonel in 1786 and to full colonel in 1787. When George Sheldon of Deerfield wrote a brief history of the American Revolution in 1916, he focused on Joseph Stebbins' service and bravery.