Shays, Daniel(shāz), c.1747–1825, American soldier and insurrectionist, b. probably in Hopkinton, Mass. A farmer from W Massachusetts, he fought the British in the American Revolution and was made a captain of the 5th Massachusetts Regiment in 1777. After the war he settled at Pelham, Mass., and became a leader in the revolt of small farmers that resulted from postwar economic depression; the uprising became known as Shays's Rebellion. After the defeat of the insurgents in Feb., 1787, Shays fled to Vermont. He was finally pardoned in June, 1788, and later moved to New York state.
Born circa 1747 in Hopkinton, Mass, (now in New Hampshire); died Sept. 29, 1825, in Sparta, N.Y. Leader of a rebellion of poor farmers in the USA in 1786 and 1787.
From 1775 to 1780, Shays fought in the American Revolution. In 1777 he received the rank of captain for distinction in battle. After the war, Shays engaged in farming. In 1786 he headed a rebellion in Massachusetts (seeSHAYS’ REBELLION). After it was defeated, Shays was sentenced to death in 1787 but was pardoned in 1788.