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Friction increased with the New York provincial government in October 1771, when Allen and a company of Green Mountain Boys drove off a group of Scottish settlers near Rupert. Allen detained two of the settlers and forced them to watch them burn their newly constructed cabins. Allen then ordered them to "go your way now, and complain to that damned scoundrel your Governor, God damn your Governor, Laws, King, Council, and Assembly". The settlers protested his language but Allen continued the tirade, threatening to send any troops from New York to Hell. In response, New York Governor William Tryon issued warrants for the arrests of those responsible, and eventually put a price of £20 (around £3.3k today, or $4.4k) on the heads of six participants, including Allen. Allen and his comrades countered by issuing offers of their own:

''£25 REWARD—Whereas James Duane and John Kempe, of New York, have by their menaces and threats greatly disturbed the public peace and repose of the honest peasants of Bennington and the settlements to the northward, which are now and ever have been in the peace of God and the King, and are patriotic and liege subjects of Geo. the 3rd. Any person that will apprehend these common disturbers, viz: James Duane and John Kempe, and bring them to Landlord Fay's at Bennington shall have £15 reward James Duane and £10 reward for John Kempe, paid by
Ethan Allen, Remember Baker, Robert Cochran''

The situation deteriorated further over the next few years. Governor Tryon and the Green Mountain Boys exchanged threats, truce offers, and other writings, frequently written by Allen in florid and didactic language while the Green Mountain Boys continued to drive away surveyors and incoming tenants. Most of these incidents did not involve bloodshed, although individuals were at times manhandled, and the Green Mountain Boys sometimes did extensive property damage when driving tenants out. By March 1774, the harsh treatment of settlers and their property prompted Tryon to increase some of the rewards to £100."


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