After the American Revolution, an economic Depression hit the United States. People lost their jobs and economic activity slowed down.
Farmers were greatly impacted by this depression. Many farmers were in a very difficult situation as they could not repay their debts.
To make matters even worse, the state of Massachusetts raised taxes. If farmers in Massachusetts could not pay his taxes, the state threatened to take his farm or throw the farmer in jail.
In 1786, Daniel Shays, a former Patriot soldier who fought at Bunker Hill and Saratoga, organized a rebellion. 1,000 farmers took part in this rebellion. They gathered near a courthouse and prevented the state from taking farms from farmers who could not pay their taxes.
The government of Massachusetts sent the militia to drive the farmers away and to send them back to their farms.
Many Americans saw Shays' Rebellion as a sign that the Articles of Confederation did not work as an effective constitution for the United States of America.