In young America, the common method by which a gentleman cleansed his honor of insult was to resort to arms under the code duello. The great majority of prominent men in the early days of the republic resorted to this adjustment at one time or another. Whether the insult were justified or not made no difference to the offended individual. If he were victorious in combat, either the righteousness of his Cause was considered upheld or the greater need for discretion in questioning his integrity was emphasized.
Doherty, Herbert J. Jr.
"Code Duello in Florida,"
Florida Historical Quarterly: Vol. 29
, Article 4.
Available at: https://stars.library.ucf.edu/fhq/vol29/iss4/4