Essay about Revolutionary War

Submitted By jtnguyen98
Words: 2003
Pages: 9

On March 22, 1765, Parliament passed the Stamp Act in the American colonies which called for tax stamps to be placed on all paper goods sold in the colonies. The purpose of the Stamp Act was to pay for “redcoats” stationed in America and dig Britain out of debt from the Seven Year War. This taxation was the first attempt to levy a direct tax on the colonies and was met by fierce boycotts and disapproval. The Stamp Act was the “last straw” the colonists would put with from Great Britain. This tax, especially, affected the colonists because it demanded every document and paper to bear a stamp, and those who failed to compile would be jailed. Led by justice speakers such as Patrick Henry, the colonists began a massive boycott of British goods causing colonial imports to fall significantly. As a result of the taxation, a protest group known as the “Sons of Liberty”, most prominent in Massachusetts, was formed. Most active in Boston, the Sons of Liberty attacked an admiralty court and looted the home of the chief justice. In reaction to this policy, delegates from nine colonies gathered at the Stamp Act Congress in New York in 1765. Guided by Pennsylvanian John Dickinson, the congress drew up the Declaration of Rights and Grievances which stated that as the colonies had no representation in Parliament, the tax was unconstitutional and against their rights as Englishmen. In Great Britain, colonial representative Benjamin Franklin argued a similar point and warned that continued taxation could lead to rebellion. Proving his point, the “regulator movement”, a small group of North Carolina Scot-Irish farmers, spawned in response by lashing out again the British taxation. Parliament reluctantly repealed the tax, providing the American colonists more encouragement to continue fighting the British taxation.
Furthermore, persistently seeking methods to generate revenue in order to escape further debt, Parliament allowed Charles Townshend, a new prime minister, to pass the Townshend Acts on June 29, 1767. An indirect tax, the acts placed import duties on commodities such as lead, paper, paint, glass, and tea. These indirect import duties were met by further non-importation, or the refusal to purchase the goods. While colonial leaders organized boycotts of the taxed goods, smuggling increased and efforts commenced to develop domestically-produced alternatives; however, admiralty courts were created to prosecute American smugglers. Over the next three years, boycotts persisted in the colonies. On March 5, 1770, angry colonists began throwing snowballs and rocks at British troops guarding the Customs House in Boston. In the commotion, British troops opened fire on the mob, killing five Americans, and this shoot-out became known as the “Boston Massacre.” As a result, the so-called “massacre” was used as propaganda against the British. With tensions in the colonies reaching a breaking point, Parliament repealed most aspects of the Townshend Acts, but the tax on tea remained.
Moreover, on May 10, 1773, Parliament passed the Tea Act with the goal of aiding the struggling British East India Company. Parliament had given the monopoly of the tea business in America to the British East Company, meaning that there was a hidden tax on tea. Aware that this was an attempt by Parliament to prevent colonial boycott of British goods, the Sons of Liberty delivered the Boston Tea Party. In 1773, three ships carrying East India Company tea arrived in the port. The Sons of Liberty dressed as Native Americans and boarded the ships and tossed 342 chests of tea into Boston Harbor. A direct affront to British authority, the "Boston Tea Party" forced Parliament to take action against the colonies. Salutary Neglect refers to an unofficial and long-lasting 17th century British policy of avoiding strict enforcement of parliamentary laws, meant to keep the American colonies obedient to England. Due to the crown’s absence in enforcing regulations in the…