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Print this page Introduction Writing with the benefit of hindsight inJohn Adams, one of the central figures in the American Revolution, recalled that Americans were committed to independence in their hearts long before war broke out in America in Adams' comment suggests that American independence was inevitable: InAmericans joyously celebrated the British victory in the Seven Years' War, revelling in their identity as Britons and jealously guarding their much-celebrated rights which they believed they possessed by virtue of membership in what they saw as the world's greatest empire.
Americans had contributed significantly to the recent victory both militarily and financially, yet within a dozen years of the British victory war broke out between British soldiers and Massachusetts militiamen at Lexington and Concord.
Between tosuccessive British governments took decisions which resulted in the loss of the 13 rebellious colonies in America. If John Adams was correct and revolution was in the hearts of Americans years prior tothen it was the actions of British ministers which made independence first a possibility and then a likelihood.
The British victory in the Seven Years' War had been costly in human and financial terms. Desperate to find new sources of revenue, Grenville looked to the colonies and viewed from cash-strapped London, the North American settlements were very attractive.
Americans, British officials concluded, benefited from the protection afforded by the British army and the Royal Navy, and it would only be fair if they contributed to their own defence.
So in Grenville, acting as prime minister, proposed a far-reaching tax for Americans and Parliament adopted a Stamp Act in March of Under the terms of the Act, scheduled to take effect on 1 November, almost anything formally written or printed would have to be on special stamped paper for which a tax must be paid.
Among the items covered by the tax were wills, deeds, diplomas, almanacs, advertisements, bills, bonds, newspapers, playing cards and even dice. Anyone who was involved in any legal transactions, purchased a newspaper or pamphlet or accepted a government appointment would have to pay the tax.
In short, the Stamp Act would affect nearly all Americans. Grenville intended, with the full agreement of Parliament, that the Stamp Act should not only raise revenue, it should clearly demonstrate that the British government through Parliament exercised political sovereignty over the colonies.
Unsurprisingly, Americans responded negatively to the Stamp Act, arguing that they had contributed to their own defence during the late war by providing manpower, money and supplies to the British war effort.
They argued that they already paid taxes which were raised locally - each colony had its own assembly which levied local taxes. Colonists in America felt that they discharged their obligations when they paid colonial taxes and they resented being compelled to pay taxes levied by a Parliament in which they were not represented.
Moreover, they contended, the distance between America and Britain precluded American representation in Parliament. And so, in the spring and early summer ofmost of the colonial assemblies adopted resolutions condemning the Stamp Act. The government in London was unimpressed by the constitutional arguments made by the colonists or the petitions and resolutions adopted by their assemblies.
If the Americans wanted to register their dissatisfaction with the Stamp Act, they would have to resort to less subtle means. Its major town, Boston, had a long tradition of rioting and popular demonstrations to defend local interests and it was particularly hard hit by the downturn. The combination of economic hard times, an unpopular and unprecedented tax as well as a local tradition of violent resistance was potentially dangerous.
American opponents of the Act rendered it a dead letter by the autumn. On 14th August, an angry mob attacked the house of Andrew Oliver - the local man rumoured to be responsible for collecting the tax. Then on the 26th they damaged the houses of colonial officials and completely destroyed the home of the colony's Lieutenant Governor.
The demonstrations spread throughout the colonies and, through threats, intimidation and violence, American opponents of the Act rendered it a dead letter by the autumn. Commercial boycott Having nullified the proposed tax on the streets, American protestors wanted to secure the repeal on the offending legislation in Parliament.
In October several colonies sent delegates to New York to attend a 'Stamp Act Congress' which proposed a commercial boycott as means to pressure Parliament to act.
American opponents of the Stamp Act would refuse to purchase British goods in order to put commercial pressure on Parliament to repeal the act. In MarchParliament acquiesced and repealed the Stamp Act. Parliament assembled, had, hath and of right ought to have, full power and authority to make laws and statutes of sufficient force and validity to bind the colonies and people of America.
In other words, although Parliament was repealing the Stamp Act, it retained its right to govern America. Many Americans took a different view. The Boston loyalist Peter Oliver - the brother of Andrew Oliver who had suffered during the riots of August - wrote bitterly of the repeal: A Law without Penalties, or one with Penalties not exacted, is Was the American Revolution Inevitable?
During the French and Indian War, the British defeated the French and became the national masters of the region of eastern and northern part of North America. American Heritage Magazine.. Separate listing containing more than articles related to the Revolutionary War in general published since Though the Revolutionary War lasted only a few short years, the American Revolution was a process that started long before the first shots of war were fired.
The rebellion was permeated with the legacy of colonial political ideals, aggravated by parliamentary taxation, escalated by the restriction of American civil liberties and ignited by. Looks a Lee Harvey Oswald's personality, showing that he fit the clinical profile of a certain kind of murderer.
The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University houses writing resources and instructional material, and we provide these as a free service of the Writing Lab at Purdue. Civil War And The American Revolutionary War - The costly battle also ended Robert E.
American Heritage Magazine.. Separate listing containing more than articles related to the Revolutionary War in general published since The American Empire. By Wade Frazier. Revised July Purpose and Disclaimer. Timeline. Introduction. The New World Before “Discovery,” and the First Contacts. Was the American Revolution Inevitable? Uploaded by Gotskillz on Jul 04, In , war broke out between the British and the American colonists.
Lee 's advance into Maryland. 4. Vicksburg (surrendered July 4, ) Lincoln realized early in the war that control of the Mississippi was a major goal of the Western forces.