Events Leading Up To The American Revolution Essay

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With the research that I have done, I have come up with the following informationon the events leading to the American Revolution. After the French-Indian War the British Government decided to reap greater benefits from the colonies. The colonies were pressed with greater taxes without any representation in Britain. This eventually lead to the Boston Tea Party. In retaliation the British passed what are now considered the Intolerable (or Coercive Acts) to bring the colonies to the heal of the King.
The Intolerable (or Coercive Acts)*Quartering Act: Effective March 24, 1765This bill required that colonial authorities to furnish barracks and supplies to British troops. In 1766, it was expanded to public houses and unoccupied buildings. *Stamp Act: Effective March 24, 1765This bill raised revenue in the American colonies. The bill require that all legal documents, licenses, commercial contracts, newspapers, pamphlets, and playing cards to have a tax stamp on them.
This act was already in place in Great Britain and just extended itself into the colonies. It was put in place to raise money to cut the costs of keeping the military troops in the colonies. It was undebated in Britain, but it brought much opposition among the colonists, who said that it was because they had no representation in Parliament, and that they couldn’t be taxed withouthaving some voice in the matters. Colonial businessmen stopped importingBritish goods until Britain would repeal the act. Most of the colonistsrefused to use the stamps on business papers and courts would not usethem on official documents.
Since it was opposed by the British businesscommunity the act was repealed by the British Parliament on March 4,1766, after Benjamin Franklin, Pennsylvania’s representative in London,spoke on behalf of the American colonists. It’s repeal was followed by theDeclaratory Act which gave the British Government the right to legally taxthe colonists by any acts they wanted. *Boston Port Act: Effective June 1, 1774This bill closed the port of Boston to all colonists until, the damages fromthe Boston Tea Party were paid for. The bill also moved the seat ofgovernment of the Massachusetts Bay Colony from Boston to Salem. Most of the colonists were upset and showed sorrow for the town bysetting, the day that the bill went into effect, aside as a day of fasting and ofprayer. To make sure that this act was enforced correctly British troopswere sent to Boston, along with enough boats to blockade the port.
however there where towns in New England that sent grain and other typesof food to Boston. *Administration of Justice Act: Effective May 20, 1774This bill stated that British Officials could not be tried in provincial courtsfor capital crimes. They would be extradited back to Britain and triedthere. This effectively gave the British free reign to do whatever theywished, because no justice would be served while they were still in thecolonies.
*Massachusetts Government Act: Effective May 20, 1774This bill effectively annulled the charter of the colonies, giving the BritishGovernor complete control of the town meetings, and taking control out ofthe hands of the colonists. *Quebec Act: Effective May 20, 1774This bill extended the Canadian borders to cut off The Western Colonies ofConnecticut, Massachusetts, and Virginia. Although this was not passed asone of the Intolerable Acts it is considered to be one of them because itstopped forward progress of the colonies and took some of their land. Events*Sugar ; Molasses Act: Smuggling trade flourished for many decades,while the British government made few attempts to enforce the MolassesAct. In 1764, realizing they had massive losses of potential revenue, thenew prime minister of Britain, George Grenville, started a policy of strictenforcement of the customs laws, and later that year the Molasses Act wasreplaced by the Sugar Act.
The provisions of this new act raised the tax onsugar and lowered the tax on molasses; added a tax to Madeira wine; andimposed a difficult bonding procedure to be applied to all shipped merchandise. The Sugar Act was generally enforced although its tax waseventually lowered. *Townshend Acts: This bill was passed by Parliament in 1767, affectingthe Thirteen Original Colonies The first part of the bill suspended the NewYork Assembly, penalizing it for not complying with a law, that wasenacted two years beforehand. That reprimanded the colonies to housethe British troops in the New World.
The second part called the RevenueAct made customs taxes on colonial imports of glass, red, and white lead,paints, paper, and tea. A later act appointed commissioners in the coloniesto head the custom service and to make sure the taxes were collected. These acts were overwhelmingly unpopular in the colonies. Because a colonist published an article that criticized the Townshend Acts the Kingdissolved the Massachusetts legislature in 1768.
*The Boston Massacre: The Boston Massacre occurred on March 5,1770, between British troops and a group of citizens from Boston. The Britishtroops were housed in the town to stop demonstrations against the Townshend Acts. Because of constant criticism by the citizens, a squad ofBritish soldiers, who were also hit by rockets thrown during a demonstration, fired shots into the crowd, killing five men. The eightsoldiers along with their commanding officer were on trial for murder. Incidentally, they were defended by John Adams, who would later become president of the U. S.
, and Josiah Quincy. Two of the eight soldiers werefound guilty of manslaughter, but claimed benefit of clergy, and were branded on the thumb instead. The others, including the officer, wereacquitted. The ?Massacre,? as it was called, was exploited by SamuelAdams to help gather more anti-British support. *The Boston Tea Party: On May 10, 1773, Parliament allowed the EastIndia Tea Co. to Export a half a million pounds of tea to the Americancolonies for the purpose of selling it without imposing upon the companythe usual duties and tariffs.
It was their intention to try to save the corruptand mismanaged company from bankruptcy. The effect was that thecompany could undersell any other tea available in the colonies, includingsmuggled tea. The disruption to American commerce was unacceptable tomany, including Sam Adams. On November 27, 1773, three ships loadedwith tea, from the East India Tea Co. , landed at Boston and were prevented from unloading their cargo.
Fearing that the tea would be seizedfor failure to pay customs duties, and eventually become available for sale,Adams and the Boston Whigs arranged a solution. On the night of December 16, 1773, a group of colonists, thinly disquised as MohawkIndians, snuck aboard the ships and dumped 342 chests of tea into BostonHarbor. The sabotage was denounced by Boston’s less radical population,and applauded by those more radical. England’s response was the passingof the Intolerable Acts.
ReferencesLegrand, Jacques. Cronicle of America. Chronicle Publications. Mount Kisco, N. Y.
, 1989. Mazour, Anatole G. World History ?People and Nations? Revised ed. Holt, Rinehart,and Winston, Inc. , 1993 p. 412-416.
Microsoft(R) Encarta(R) 97 Encyclopedia. (c) 1993-1996 Microsoft Corporation. South Western. Student Handbook vol. 1 ; 2.
MacMillan Publishing Co. , 1989. Western Printing. The Golden Book Encyclopedia, Book 1. Golden Press, Inc., 1959.

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