Causes of the American Revolution
The American Revolution
The American Revolution was a time when the colonists revolted against England. The British were in a lot of debt after the French and Indian War and needed a way to pay it off. They decided to tax the colonists on basic necessities to raise money. The colonists started to get angry with the British, and tensions arose. The colonists began to use violent acts to try to get their point across. Some of the richer colonist that were effected even convinced to poor and middle class to boycott the items even though they weren't even effected.The English had to other choice than to use force against the colonists. I think that the colonists had the right to rebel if they thought England was being to excessive with the taxes.
The Navigation Acts
Britain passed the Navigation Acts in order to put mercantilism into effect. The Dutch had a powerful trade with the colonies, but England wanted to be the only country trading with them. Any goods going to another country had to go to England first and British ships could only be used. The Navigation acts were the first acts passed and created lots of resentment in the colonies.
Proclamation of 1763
The Proclamation of 1763 was a law made by King George that restricted the colonists from settling beyond the Appalachian Mountains. Even though they had just won the land from France, Native Americans still lived there. Britain didn't want anymore conflict with the Indians to put them in even more debt. Colonists were very angry about this and some of them settled anyway.
The Stamp Act
The Stamp Act taxed every single paper document with something printed on it and it was the second major act to raise money to pay off the war debt. Immediately, the colonies began to boycott paper and even attack tax collectors in an act of rebellion. Samuel Adams created a group in order in enforce the protesting in the colonies called The Sons of Liberty. This group encouraged boycotting and harmed many tax collectors and soldiers. Because of this, leaders of several colonies met to discuss the act. This was known as the Stamp Act Congress. The representatives sent a letter to King George to ask for him to repeal the acts. The King agreed in order to not start a revolution.
The Quartering Act
Because of all the protests from the Stamp Act England needed to send reinforcement troops to help enforce the laws. But, there was one problem: there wasn't any room for the soldiers to stay. In response, King George passed the Quartering Act. This made it mandatory for colonists to let soldiers into their homes and provide food and a place to sleep for them. The colonists hated this act because it became very expensive to feed the soldiers and sometimes, they would randomly search the homes if they thought something was stolen. The soldiers had Writs of Assistance, meaning the did not need a search warrant in order to search homes.
The Townshend Acts
These acts taxed many items such as; glass, paper, tea and other important items. These acts were created in order to guarantee profit from the tax since these items were used so frequently. Another group known as the Daughters of Liberty started to protest the acts by making their own items by hand in order to avoid paying any taxes. In 1770 the Townshend Acts were repealed except for one item: Tea. Britain kept taxing this item because it was so popular in the colonies.
The Boston Massacre
On March 5, 1770 a group of redcoats found themselves cornered against an angry group of colonists. The colonists taunted the soldiers and may have even thrown things at them. The Redcoats fired into the crowd of unarmed colonists. Five died, Crispus Attucks, being the first. Word spread quickly from colony to colony of the shooting. Samuel Adams and The Sons of Liberty made sure word got out. On the other hand, John Adams defended the British soldiers in court and came out victorious.
The Boston Tea Party
Even though the Tea Act made tea even cheaper than any place in the world Bostonians were outraged at the tax. The East India Company controlled all tea going to the colonies and England was heavily benefitting from it. The colonists were fine with cheaper tea but there was no way they were ok with Britain getting all the money. One night, The Sons of Liberty dressed as indians and boarded 3 English ships containing 90,000 lbs. of tea in total. They decided to dump all of the tea in the harbor as an act of protest.
The Coercive Act
These acts were nicknamed the "Intolerable Acts" by the colonists of Boston. This was because they were impossible to avoid. This act was also used as a punishment for the Boston Tea Party. First, the Governor of Massachusetts was replaced by a royal governor, trade was stopped with other countries and the Boston Harbor was closed until the tea was paid for. The colonies were mad about the Coercive Act but there was nothing that they could do.