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The Mercies of Knowledge is a seven-part Stranger mission featured in Red Dead Redemption 2. The quest becomes available during Chapter 4 of the story.


Part I & II

Professor Andrew Bell III sees Arthur and asks him if he knows where he can find any moonshine. He claims the liquor is not for drinking, but will be used for a 'machine of love'. He promises to pay if 100 gallons can be brought to him. After visiting Alden, the train station clerk in Rhodes, he gives Arthur a hot tip on where to find a wagon containing it.

Part III

A transport of moonshine heading into Saint Denis from Bluewater Marsh is intercepted and stolen. Once the player passes the wooden bridge outside of city, the cart will arrive with two riders alongside two riders on horseback. After taking out all of the guards, the cart is delivered to the professor.

Part IV

Bell asks Arthur to go to the Saint Denis Police Station to get a permit from Police Chief Lambert to perform one of the executions. Arthur subsequently talks to the police chief, who states that the permit will cost at least a hundred dollars, after which Arthur can negotiate with Lambert in lowering the cost.

Part V

Arthur informs Professor Bell that he was able to get the permit. The professor is impressed, and shows Arthur a wanted poster of Wilson J. McDaniels - a criminal who he wishes to use as a test subject.

Part VI

McDaniels can be found around Moonstone Pond with his gang. After heading to this area, Arthur manages to fight off the gang and hogties McDaniels, before proceeding to bring him back to Professor Bell in Saint Denis.

Part VII

Andrew Bell demonstrates his electrical chair on the now-captured, corked, and shaved Wilson J. McDaniels. Professor Bell proceeds to start the machine, only for it to cook McDaniels in front of a full audience who scream in horror and begin to disperse from the smell. Bell sparks up the machine two more times, attempting to demonstrate how humane it is, only for it to backfire and electrocute him to death the third time around. McDaniels finally spits out the cork, pleading for someone to shoot him, and then dies in considerable pain. Afterwards, the professor can be looted for his blueprints, although it results in an Honor loss.


  • Several moonshiners - killed by Arthur Morgan to steal the moonshine wagon.
  • Members of McDaniel's gang - killed by Arthur Morgan to capture Wilson J. McDaniels
  • Andrew Bell III - accidentally electrocuted by his electric chair
  • Wilson J. McDaniels - electrocuted by the electric chair

Missable Items in the Mission

  • Electric Chair Blueprint


  • Players should complete this mission before "Our Best Selves", as it will disappear and not be available afterwards.
  • Despite only being available for Arthur to complete, the mission description in the save game menu never mentions him - other stranger missions only available to one character mention said character, while those available for both avoid mentioning either. This implies the mission was originally available to John as well, but was removed for unknown reasons. If the game is modded, John has his own dialogue but no facial animations in cutscenes. (Probably to stay historically accurate as by 1907, the electric chair was no longer an experimental execution method.)
  • After the player delivers the moonshine to Mr. Bell, he may remark "all this wonderful methanol." Methanol is a non-drinkable alcohol made from wood - ethanol, made from grains, is what is supposed to be in moonshine.

Video Walkthrough


Red Dead Redemption 2 Stranger Mission - The Mercies of Knowledge


Completing this Stranger mission strand is associated with these trophies/achievements:

10 gamerscoregamerscore
Bronze bronzebronze
Reach maximum or minimum Honor level.

30 gamerscoregamerscore
Bronze bronzebronze
Complete 10 Stranger mission strands.

100 gamerscoregamerscore
Gold goldgold
Attain 100% Completion.