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A Bold Step Towards

Unit 3 Part 2

A Brief Recap
The British have sought to reestablish their dominance over the
colonies following the French and Indian War.
A series of indirect and direct taxes have infuriated the colonists,
who have grown accustomed to having representation in
The colonists had successfully defeated the Stamp Act through
economic boycott, however with the Declaratory Acts England had
reasserted its legal right to collect taxes.

The Townshend Duties

Passed in 1767, these import taxes were initially
successful. Taxes were not seen by the common man
and instead were paid by merchants.
However, colonial leaders like Samuel Adams and
John Dickinson argued that these were still
taxation without representation.
Letters from a Farmer In Pennsylvania written
by Dickinson, these anonymous letters argued
that representation was a fundamental right in
English Common Law.
The Massachusetts Circular Letter called for a
general boycott of British goods
The Act is repealed, however the resentment will
lead to further violence.

The Boston Massacre

1st violence between British and

5 colonists are killed.
Crispus Attucks - First black
colonist killed in the defense of
To avoid further escalation,
parliament repealed the Townshend

The Boston Tea Party

Parliament passes the Tea Act in 1773 to help the struggling British East India
Actually makes tea CHEAPER for the colonists.
However, colonists boycott because to buy the tea would be to legitimize
British taxation.
When trade ships carrying tea arrive in Boston Harbor they are boarded by
members of the Sons of Liberty and over three hundred chests of tea are
thrown overboard.
The King and Parliament are outraged at the destruction of property and
respond with the Coercive Acts.

The Coercive/Intolerable Acts

As punishment for the Boston Tea Party Parliament enacts several

The Port Act closed Boston harbor

The MA Government Act closed the representative government
An expansion of the quartering act.
The Quebec Act reorganized Canadian territory but infuriated the

The First Continental Congress

Organized in response to the Intolerable Acts
Designed to protest Parliamentary Action and to work to repair our relationship
with England.
Most notable act The Suffolk Resolves Called for the immediate repeal of
the Intolerable Acts and made plans to begin military preparations.
A more moderate plan the Declaration of Rights and Grievances urged the
King to address colonial concerns.
Both are angrily dismissed by the King.

Lexington and Concord

The British will move to prevent further
insurrection by the colonists.
General Thomas Gage will lead a British force from
Boston to Lexington and Concord to seize military
They will be met by colonial Minutemen, or
militia. The British succeed in their objective,
but will be peppered with gunfire all the way
back to Boston.
They suffer 250 casualties, a humiliation at
the hands of colonial rabble.

Bunker Hill
Patriot militia drag cannons up
onto Breeds Hill above Boston.
The cannons are poised to fire
down into the harbor at British
warships at anchor.
The British are forced to dislodge
the patriots and while successful
suffer more than a thousand

The Second Continental Congress

There is duality in the Second Continental Congress
On one hand they order the raising of an Army and Navy
On the other hand they issue the Olive Branch petition, which is a last ditch
effort to prevent war.
The king dismisses the petition and declares the colonies in open rebellion.

By 1776 it is clear that war is unavoidable and the Congress adopts

the Declaration of Independence.