In 1765, the British parliament passed the stamp act which meant that the British Government had the same right to tax American colonists as the British citizens. The American colonists felt that the new Tax was unjust and they had no right to tax the colonists since they were not represented in the British Parliament.
In 1765, the British parliament passed a series of acts known as the Townshend acts. These acts placed new duties on glass, paper, tea and tightened customs in America. The purpose of these acts were to raise revenue to pay the salaries of governors, judges and other officials in attempt to keep them loyal to Britain. The acts also served as a demonstration of the British government to tax the colonies. These acts were met with a lot of resistance in the American colonies; “No taxation without representation”. In return, the British sent their troops to occupy Boston in 1768 which further escalated the situation that lead to the Boston massacre of 1770.
Protests escalated in 1773 when American Colonists disguised as Indians boarded a British ship from the East India Company and threw chests of Tea in the Boston harbor in what is known as the Boston Tea Party. The British viewed the participants at Petty Criminals who should be punished while the American colonists viewed them as heroes, a big victory for liberty. The Boston tea party served as a key event in the growth of the American Revolution. In 1774, the British Parliament responded by passing the toughest acts yet known as the coercive Acts (Intolerable acts). By so doing, they closed the port of Boston, restricted town meetings as well as restructured the Massachusetts government. The colonists responded by boycotting all British goods and formed the first continental congress. This included some of America’s most respected leaders. Among them were; John Adams, George Washington, Samuel Adams, Patrick Henry, Richard Henry Lee and Christopher Gadsden. They petitioned the British Government to repeal the acts and coordinated resistance among the colonists.
The second continental Congress convened in Philadelphia in May 1775. They formed a continental army and named George Washington as its commander. In December of the same year, the British Parliament passed the prohibitory act which meant that they were declaring war on American commerce. They wanted the colonists to beg for pardon, until then they could not trade with the rest of the world. The mighty British navy placed a blockade on American ports and seized their ships in high seas. This only pushed for the colonists resolve for independence from Great Britain. On July 2nd 1776, congress voted for Independence. The motion easily passed with twelve states voting for Independence (New York Abstained). Congress sent a delegation of three men to France who secured an agreement with the British to what is known as the Treaty of Paris of 1783. It guaranteed the independence of United States marking the end of 176 years of British rule. Common sense
Common sense is a pamphlet written by Thomas Paine. It became a best seller by selling nearly 120,000 copies in only 3 months. The pamphlet served as a catalyst to the American Revolution by encouraging and stating the benefits of declaring benefits of Independence from Great