Massacre of Tranent

Massacre Of Tranent

Massacre of Tranent

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The Massacre of Tranent took place 1797 in the town of Tranent, East Lothian, Scotland.

On 28 August, a proclamation was drawn up by local people to object to the enforced recruitment of Scots into the military, to be used either for controlling their own people or for deployment overseas. The proclamation contained the following four clauses:-

  1. We declare that we unanimously disapprove of the late Act of Parliament for raising 6000 militiamen in Scotland.
  2. That we will assist each other in endeavouring to repeal the said Act.
  3. That we are peaceably disposed; and should you, in endeavouring to execute the said Act, urge us to adopt coercive measures, we must look upon you to be the aggressors, and as responsible to the nation for all the consequences that may follow.
  4. Although we may be overpowered in effecting the said resolution, and dragged from our parents, friends, and employment, to be made soldiers of, you can infer from this what trust can be reposed in us if ever we are called upon to disperse our fellow-countrymen, or to oppose a foreign foe.


This measure may have been encouraged or incited by the United Scotsmen, a secret society spread throughout Scotland who were believed to be intent on insurgence and the setting up of a Scottish government under Muir of Huntershill. It is believed they had been responsible for inciting similar riots and protests elsewhere using the 1797 Militia Act as an excuse.

The following day, 29 August, the proclamation was handed to...
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