Nathaniel Bacon (c. 1640s – October 26, 1676) was a wealthy colonist of the Virginia Colony, famous as the instigator of Bacon's Rebellion of 1676, which collapsed when Bacon himself died from dysentery.
When he arrived in Virginia, Bacon settled on the frontier near Jamestown, Virginia, and was appointed to the council of Governor William Berkeley.Some sources have claimed that Berkeley's wife, Francis Culpeper was a cousin of Nathaniel Bacon.
Before the "Virginia Rebellion," as it was then called, began in earnest, in 1674, a group of so-called "freeholders" on the Virginia frontier demanded that Native Americans living on treaty-protected lands be driven out or killed. Later that same year, a group of Virginia militiamen raided a settlement and killed some thirty natives. Acting against Berkeley's orders, a larger force surrounded and attacked a fortified Susquehannock village, killing the chiefs whom Berkeley had persuaded to negotiate. The Susquehannocks retaliated in force, attacking plantations and killing 60 settlers.