The Road To Revolution • By the mid-1700s tensions had been rising between Britain and its colonies • These tensions would intensify over the next decade and eventually lead the American colonies to revolution • The French and Indian War left the British with a huge debt • Britain decided the colonists should pay the costs of maintaining peace in the colonies • Over the next few years, Parliament passed several laws to raise money
Sugar Act (1764) What was it? • First law to help pay for war debt • Placed a tax on molasses Reaction of colonist? • Colonial merchants smuggled sugar • Bribed tax collectors • Leader Samuel Adams called the act: “taxation without representation”
Stamp Act (1765) What was it? • First time Parliament taxed colonist directly • Placed taxes on legal documents • Wills, diplomas and marriage licenses • Taxed newspapers, almanacs
Stamp Act cont. Colonist Reaction? • Met with great protest (violence, boycotts, riots) • Sons of Liberty- • Group that lead protest against taxing British was shocked by the reaction that they had. So they repealed the Law.
Quartering Act (1765) What was it? • Colonist must provide food, drink, fuel, living space, and transportation for British soldiers How did the colonist react? • Disputes erupt in New York • They refused to obey the rules.
Townshend Acts (1767) What was it? • Tax on goods such as glass, paper, paint, lead • Gave right to officers to search anyone’s house for smuggled goods • without a search warrant
Townshend Acts Colonist Reaction? • Powerful opposition • Protest groups increases • Troops sent to Boston to keep order and enforce laws.
Boston Massacre • March 5, 1770 • A crowd gathered and colonist tease the British soldiers • Conflicting reports about what happened next “One of the soldiers having received a severe blow with a stick, stepped a little on one side and instantly fired [his gun]. . . On this a general attack was made on the men . . . Instantly three or four of the soldiers fired, one after another, and directly after three more in the same confusion and hurry. The mob then ran away, except three unhappy men who instantly expired [died].”
Tea Act (1773) • Parliament repealed the Townshend Act What was it? • Tax on tea (only tax that remained) • Meant to help struggling British company and reduce smuggling
Boston Tea Party • In November 1773 three ships arrived in Boston Harbor, Bostonians allowed the ships to dock but not unload • On the night of December 16, 1773, a large and angry crowd gathered demanding that the ships be sent back to London • Then Samuel Adams and about 70 other arrived disguised as Indians • Protected by the crowd, they boarded the ships and dropped the tea chests into the harbor • The loss of the tea infuriated British officials and brought more repressive laws
Intolerable Acts (1774) What was it? • Meant to punish people of Boston • Shut down port of Boston • No more town meetings • British officials who were accused of crimes were to be tried in Britain • New Quartering Act
Intolerable Acts Colonist Reaction? • All colonies support Boston • First Continental Congress