The Gunpowder Plot of 1775
When the American Revolutionary War began in 1775, the Continental Congress in The USA imposed an embargo on trade with all British colonies. And this severely impacted the economy of tiny Bermuda which was itself a British colony and almost solely dependant on shipping and trading with America.
In order to circumvent this situation, Colonel Henry Tucker - a very influential merchant in Bermuda went and met a few members of Continental Congress. A deal was struck that Henry Tucker would orchestrate and ship 100 barrels of gunpowder from Bermuda to America, and in return the Continental Congress would exempt Bermuda from the trade embargo. The gunpowder would be used by the Americans to fight the war against the British.
A plot was then hatched to steal 100 barrels of gunpowder stored at a secluded magazine in Retreat Hill, about 1mile north of St. George and near Tobacco Bay, roll them over to Tobacco Bay and then load them on American ships that would be waiting offshore to collect them.
Henry Tucker could secure the support of locals in St. George to participate in this plot because all their livelihood came under threat due the trade embargo.
On August 14, 1775, two ships 'The Charleston and Savannah Packet' and the 'Lady Catherine' silently arrived and waited off the coast near Tobacco Bay. Locals took some of the sailors from the American ships to the magazine. They easily overpowered the singly sentry and captured the barrels of gunpowder. 100 barrels were rolled to Tobacco bay where a number of local boatmen ferried them across the bay to the American ships.
The first American ship took half the supplies to Charleston where they were used from Fort Moultrie to successfully defend Charleston against the British. The remaining gunpowder supplies were taken by the other ship to Philadelphia for similar purpose. One of Henry's son - St. George Tucker was personally involved in helping the barrels to be rolled over to Tobacco bay.
Although this was a serious act of treason, very surprisingly and mysteriously the investigation into the case was not carried out. This was due to the fact that Henry Tucker Jr. - another son of Colonel Henry Tucker was married to the daughter of the British Governor George Breure.
After all being a British colony, the local Bermudians eventually sided with the British and the Continental Congress in America re-imposed the trade embargo on Bermuda. Bermuda had no agricultural produce of its own and it soon went out of food. The shipping industry in Bermuda turned to privateering and started intercepting other passing ships (mostly American ships) to snatch supplies and this continued all through until the revolutionary war came to an end.
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