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Thomas Wilson Dorr

Dorr Rebellion

Conley, Patrick T. “Popular Sovereignty or Public Anarchy? America Debates the Dorr Rebellion.” Rhode Island History 60, no. 3 (Summer 2002): 71-91.

The Dorr Rebellion is a pivotal event in Rhode Island history. This event, led by reformer Thomas Dorr (pictured here), was started by a group of men who did not own land and therefore could not vote. In an effort to change this, Dorr and supporters drafted “The People’s Constitution,” which disregarded the landholding requirement for voter registration. Read more about the Dorr Rebellion below.

Dorr Rebellion



Why did the author of this article think that the Dorr War was ludicrous?

Why did supporters of the Dorr Rebellion think the 1663 Charter was problematic?

What was the “People’s Constitution?” What did it represent?

What impact did the Dorr Rebellion have on Rhode Island?