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Chapter 2 Toward Independence: Years of Decision,

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1 Chapter 2 Toward Independence: Years of Decision, 1763-1775
US History

2 The Imperial Reform Movement 1763-1765
The Legacy of War: The French & Indian War (7 yrs. War) changed relationship betw. Colonies & Britain: Causes – a.) growing political autonomy fostered dreams of greater autonomy b.) Brits attempted to rule colonies in a more vigorous fashion Major conflicts erupted over funding, military appts., & policy objectives The war exposed weak position of Brit. Royal governors & officials; prompted immediate reforms


4 Authority Reasserted - 1762
Navigation Acts strictly enforced 1762 – Revenue Act passed by Parliament 1763 – British stationed peacetime army in North America As Britain’s national debt soared higher import duties imposed on tobacco, sugar, & excise taxes increased (sales tax) Free Americans paid about 1/5th the amount British taxpayers paid To collect taxes, British bureaucracy doubled & were empowered to arrest smugglers

5 The Sugar Act & Colonial Rights
British prime minister George Grenville won approval for the Currency Act (1764), which banned use of paper money as legal tender, thereby protecting British merchants from colonial currency not worth its face value Sugar Act of 1764 – replaced Molasses Act of 1733; Americans argued Sugar Act was unconstitutional since it estab. a tax & “all taxes ought to originate w/ the people” Americans felt the new British policies challenged existing constitutional structure of empire; still Americans only passively resisted

6 An Open Challenge: The Stamp Act
1765 – Stamp Act passed; this imposed a tax on court documents, legal papers, cards, newspapers, licenses, pamplets Ben Franklin proposed the idea of colonial representation in Parliament at this time but British officials said Americans were already “virtually” represented Grenville’s goal w/ Stamp Act was to assert the right of Parliament to impose internal taxes on colonies; as well as raise revenue

7 Rebellion, Opposition to Stamp Act was quick & united w/ Virginia’s Patrick Henry leading the way Colonists who opposed Brit. Policies became known as Patriots (defenders of American Rights); organized & articulated an ideology of resistance Mass. Proposed an all colonial assembly – Stamp Act Congress formed from 8 colonies (27 - total) Came up w/ list of Resolves: taxation w/out rep. = violation of English Rights, colonists should have seats in House of Commons, colonial gov’t = sole right to pass colonial taxes


9 Rebellion, 1765 – 1766 cont’d While Stamp Act Congress met another group assembled - The Sons of Liberty had no problem w/ the use of force to get what they wanted; riots, vandalism, tar & feather, looting, stamp burning


11 Ideological Roots of Resistance
Patriot Publicists & Pamphlets drew on 3 intellectual traditions: 1.) English common law 2.) the rationalist thought of the Enlightenment (John Locke) 3.) Republican strand of the English Whig political tradition (Glorious Revolution)

12 Parliament Compromises, 1766
In Britain diff. political factions responded to Amer. Challenge; merchants favored repeal – hard liners outraged & wanted to sent troops to suppress riots, Old Whigs = repeal to continue trade Lord Rockingham repealed Stamp Act & ruled out use of soldiers Declaratory Act of 1766 passed, along w/ Quartering Act – reaffirmed Parliamentary authority to make laws colonist had to follow

13 The Growing Confrontation, 1767-1770
The Townshend Act of 1767 – duties on paper, paint, glass, and tea The Townshend Initiatives – new prime minister Charles Townsend vowed to find a new source of revenue in colonies The Revenue Act of 1767 – created Board of American Customs Commissioners New York 1st state to refuse to comply w/ Quartering Act Restraining Act of 1767 suspended New York Assembly

14 Charles Townshend

15 American Response Colonists saw Townshend duties as taxes imposed w/out their consent, which reinvigorated American resistance movement Colonists initiated boycott of British goods & began stimulating manufacturing in colonies John Dickinson 1767 – wrote series of articles in Penn. Chronicle; Letters from a Farmer (lawyer) statement of constitutional basis for opposition; 14 of these letters distributed throughout colonies & England 1768 – Mass. Circular Letter – begun by Sam Adams; denounced Acts

16 John Dickinson Sam Adams

17 Lord North Compromises, 1770
Foot shortages, riots in English countryside, and a rising trade deficit convinced British officials to repeal duties on manufactured items, but retain tea tax as a symbol of Parliamentary Supremacy The presence of British soldiers in Boston created much tension as British soldiers opened fire on an angry mob in Boston in 1770 – Boston Massacre


19 The Road to War, British compromise ignored as Samuel Adams established the Committees of Correspondence & formed communication network betw. Colonies that stressed colonial rights The Tea Act favored British East India Co., which didn’t have to pay tax on tea it imported/exported to colonies; less expensive than Dutch Tea Radical Patriots accused British of bribing Americans to give up opposition to British taxation Patriots nullify Tea Act by forcing East India’s ships to return tea to England

20 Road to War cont’d When Patriots went further and threw East India’s tea into the Boston Harbor in 1774, Parliament rejected repeal of Tea Act & passed 4 Coercive Acts to force Mass. Into submission The 4 acts were; a Port Bill, a Government Act, a new Quartering Act, and a Justice Act Patriot leaders called these the “Intolerable Acts”


22 Patriot Response to Coercive Acts
A new colonial assembly, the Continental Congress, met in Philly in 1774; they passed a Dec. of Rights & Grievances that condemned & demanded repeal of Coercive Acts as well as Declaratory Act Begin new program of economic retaliation British said Continental Congress was illegal assembly & refused to negotiate w/ it; & further Amer. Had to pay for their defense & admin. & must acknowledge Parliament’s authority to tax them

23 The Rising of the Countryside
Success of Patriot mvmnt. dep. on actions of large rural population Initially, farmers had little interest in imperial affairs, but French & Indian War changed their attitudes Political consciousness raised in rural farmers due to urban led Patriot movement (Letters from a Penn. Farmer – by John Dickinson) Many prominent Americans opposed resistance to Britain & feared mob rule


25 The Failure of Compromise
When Cont. Congress met in 1774, Mass. - open defiance of Britain In Sept. Gen. Gage ordered British troops to seize Patriot armories & storehouses in Charleston & Cambridge

26 The Failure of Compromise
In response 20k militiamen mobilized to safeguard those supplies In April, 1775, Gage dispatched soldiers to capture colonial leaders & supplies at Concord Forewarned by Paul Revere & others, local militiamen met British 1st at Lexington, & then at Concord; as British retreated they were ambushed from neighboring towns w/ both sides suffering losses; this marked the beginning of the American Revolution


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