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Events Leading To The Cause Of

1393 words - 6 pages

During the late seventeen hundreds, many events resulted in colonial opposition to Great Britain. The British created laws and taxes that were viewed as unjust and unfair. The colonists accepted Britain's rules and taxes at first, but only for a certain period. They soon grew weary of Britain and chose to declare their independence. The beginning of their turmoil began during the French and Indian War. Britain had passed a series of Navigation Acts. These acts were to forbid the colonists from trading with any outside country other than England. The colonists did not mind at first, because they needed British protection and because they did not enforce the laws strictly. After the British won the French and Indian War, all French presence was removed from America. However, Indian uprisings led to the Proclamation of 1763. This proclamation stated that nobody may enter the Ohio Valley unless they were licensed fur traders. British troops were posted on the frontier to enforce this. This angered the colonist because they felt that they did not need British protection anymore and that they were holding them back form settling into the fertile Ohio Valley. The French and Indian War had cost England much money. To pay this off they started making taxes on the colonies. They first tax was the Sugar Act of 1764. This was an indirect tax on goods such as sugar, coffee, other imported items. The colonists started claiming this was taxation without representation. They repealed the act. The next act was the Stamp Act of 1765. This was a direct tax on printed goods such as deeds, marriage licenses, advertisements, newspapers, diplomas, custom documents, and playing cards. The colonists were again angered because they had to pay this tax when people in England did not. They again felt this was taxation without representation. The Sons of Liberty started to organize. They were a group of radicals that thought actions were better than words. The rest of the colonists organized a boycott of British goods. This act was soon repealed. Great Britain felt that the colonists were getting insubordinate. Britain issued a Declaratory act in 1765 that was essentially a statement of British power over the colonists. The colonists were relieved to have the Stamp Act gone that they paid very little attention to this declaration. In 1767, Charles Townshend, the chancellor of the exchequer, passes another tax. This tax, the Townshend Act, was an indirect tax on imported goods such as glass, lead, paint, paper, and tea. Townshend had a Board of Customs Commissions to collect the taxes. These officials would get a third of the goods collected. The official soon became corrupt and started paying people to testify against merchants to collect their goods. The colonists organized another boycott of British goods. Massachusetts' legislature sent out a Circular Letter to the other colonies telling them that they needed to stand together...

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