The Stamp Act was a direct tax on all the newspapers printed in the colonies and on most commercial and legal documents used in business. These two Acts alone provided about half of the funding needed to support the British Army. The Stamp Act caused much controversy amongst the colonists and the Stamp Act congress of 1765 said the colonists could not be taxed without their consent. The Stamp Act was repealed in 1776 and the Parliament also declared that England had full power to tax the colonies whenever it wanted (America On-Line). 2Another Act, the Currency Act of 1764 forced the colonists to pay for the entire domestic debt that England had created during the French and Indian War. Also extreme taxes were put on lead, paint, glass, paper, and tea when imported into the colonies. The money that was collected through these taxes was given to British officials in the American colonies. The colonists strongly objected, yet could not do a thing (America On-Line).In 1770 a new Prime Minister came into power in England, by the name of Lord North; his real name was Frederick. Lord North was born on April 13, 1732 and died on August 5, 1792. He is remembered as the British Prime Minister who lost most of the American colonies (America On-Line). The King, Lord North, and both houses of Parliament were involved in trying to salvage the East India Company from bankruptcy. The East India Company had suffered years of corruption a high scale level which had almost brought them to bankruptcy. Lord North drew up several bills in an attempt to save the company. His tea bill allowed the company to export tea from England to the colonies for free, but the colonists had to pay three pence per pound when loading in the colonies. The British government new this would make them a lot of money because the colonists at that time drank an average of six million pounds of tea annually. Lord North, and his friend Earl of Sandwich, both owned a large block of stock in the East India Company. Lord North had assumed that the revenue 3gained on this duty of tea would pay for the majesty’s troops in the colonies. However, his plan did not pull through (in Defence of the Public Liberty).The tea bill made Ben Franklin extremely angry. Ben was a member of the house of commons where the issue of tea taxes was often discussed. Ben Franklin once said, “it was thought that at the Beginning of the Session that the American Duty on tea would be taken off. But now the wise scheme is to take off so much Duty here as will make Tea cheaper in America than Foreigners can supply us, and confine the Duty to keep up the exercise of the Right. The Ministry had no idea that people could act ‘from any other principle but that of interest’ and believed that a Duty of three pence per pound would be sufficient to overcome all the Patriotism in America” (In Defence of the Public Liberty).The Tea Act became law on May 10, 1773, however the colonists ignores this law for the first six months that it was a law.
A Boston Town Meeting on November 5, 1773, declared the tariff of three pence per pound to be an unconstitutional tax. “A nitrous and steady opposition to the Ministerial plan of governing America, is absolutely necessary to preserve even the shadow of Liberty and is a duty which every Free man in America owes to his country, to himself, and to his Prosperity, and finally, any person who should directly or indirectly countenance this illegal attempt or any wise aid or abet it would be considered an enemy to America.” This statement was written up at the town meeting and the committee of Correspondence saw to it that these resolves were 4immediately sent to Massachusetts and from their sent to the capitals of other colonies (in Defence of the Public Liberty).A Few days later, Samuel Adams wrote Authur Lee that hi next letter would not be “upon a trifling subject” (In Defence of the Public Liberty). Samuel Adams was born in Boston on September 17, 1772 and died on October 2, 1803. Samuel Adams was the son of a wealthy brewer, but lost most of the land he inherited through poor management (America On-Line).
After attending Harvard he became active in colonial politics in Boston. Samuel Adams organized the protest against the Stamp Act and was the founder oft he Sons of Liberty (in Defecne of the Public Liberty). Adams also drew up most of the major protest documents, including the Circular Letter against the Townshend Acts. Adams was the principle organizer of the Boston Tea Party. However, because of his eccentric ways he was considered a radical (America On-Line).Even though public pressure s able to force tea distributors appointed by the East India Company in Philadelphia, New York, and Charleston to resign, those in Boston refused. In November of 1773 the Evening Post printed an article urging opposition to the landing of the tea. “The duty is absolutely to be paid in America for the purpose of raising a revenue to support improper officers in America… Are the Americans such blockheads as to care whether it be a red hot poker which they are to swallow provided Lord North forces them to swallow 5one of the two… Surely, the people will unanimously agree to send the Tea to the place from whence it came or to a worse place” (in Defence of the Public Liberty).On Sunday” November 28, 1773, the Dartmouth, one four tea ships, arrived in Boston Harbor, and tied up in Griffins Wharf. As soon as the Dartmouth landed an armed guard was ordered, by the committee of correspondence to guard the dock and prevent any tea from being invaded. The very next day, a town meeting resolved that “the tea should be returned from the in whence it came.” Governor Hutchinson ordered all five-thousand Bostonians to leave. They responded with hoots, boos, and hissing (The Coming of the Revolution).On Thursday, December 16,1773 thousands of Bostonians met in Old South Church.
During this time Governor Hutchinson took off for his country estate in Milton, Samuel Adams arose at the church and said, “This meeting can do nothing to save the country. Boston Harbor, a teapot tonight. The Mohawks come.” Each man, with their ordinary clothes hid under a blanket (dressed as Indians), carrying either a tomahawk or an ax, headed for the Dartmouth in the Boston Harbor. Before midnight they had split open and dumped 342 chests of teaworthl8,000poundsintotheBostonHarbor. Noothercargowasdamaged (The Coming of the Revolution). 6On December 17, 1773, John Adams wrote in his diary: “Last Night 3 Cargoes of Bohea Tea were emptied into the Sea… This is the most magnificent movement of all. There is a dignity, a majesty, a sublimity in this last effort of the Patriots, that I greatly admire.
The people should never rise without doing something to be remembered, something notable and striking. This destruction of the tea is so bold, so firm, intrepid and inflexible, and it must have so important consequences, and so lasting, that I can’t but consider it as an Epoch in History” (The Coming of the Revolution).The Boston Tea Party was a major event in the history of the United States. The Boston Tea Party was one of the first organized fights against the King and Parliament and it was extremely successful. The Boston Tea Party was brought about because the Patriots of the Colonies would not stand for the unjust taxation’s brought upon them by the British. Our Nation owes a great debt of gratitude to the participants in the Boston Tea Party. 7Bibliography The Coming of the Revolution 1763-1775, Lawrence Henry Gipson,Harper and Row Publishing 1954.In Defence of the Public Liberty, Samuel B. Griffith 11, Doubleday andCompany Inc. 1976.