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French and Indian War 1754-1761
The French and Indian War was due to the long lasting conflict between France and Britain for power and territory. In 1755, general Edward Braddock led 1,400 British soldiers to Virginia to move the French from the Ohio Valley. The march ended up as being a disaster for the British soldiers because of the troops’ intensely colored red uniforms, which resulted in easy to spot and vulnerable to the Frenth and Indian allies. Washington, who had fought with the Britsih and nearly escaped death himself, led the people who survived back to Virginia and was praised as a hero. The French and Indian War lasted seven gruesome years. With a surprising twist, when British took over Canada. This led to Britain and France agreeing to sign a peace treaty in 1763, which meant France would give Canada to Great Britain. Americans enjoyed this success, with Britain now gaining an immense portion to be apart of the American empire.
Proclamation of 1763
After the French and Indian War, the British government endured many issues. The main issue was that Native Americans and colonists were killing each other due to settlers pushing upward to the west. The king made an order in his Proclamation of 1763 to fix this problem by drawing a line across the center of the Appalachian Mountains. This meant settlers had to stay on the east of the line while the Indian’s had to stay on the west side. American’s plead tyranny because farmers had trouble finding new land to settle on west of the mountains. The British government placed 7,500 men from the British Army on the frontier to keep the frontier safe from Native Americans and colonists crossing it.
The British government suffered separate issues, including how to pay off the debt from the French and Indian War. So in 1765, Prime Minister George Grenville suggested the Stamp Act. The Stamp Act forced all colonists to buy a stamp with every piece of paper they bought. Colonists thought this was tyranny because the colonists had no representatives in Parliament. To them they thought they shouldn’t be taxed for that reason. Colonists protested the Stamp Act by deciding not to buy stamps. Patriots, on the other hand, terrorized tax collectors homes and even once began to bury one tax collector alive. Soon Enough the Parliament stopped the Stamps Act after months of protest.
In 1765, the Parliament passed a new law called the Quartering Act. This law made colonial assemblies give British troops a place to live. Likewise, it is very expensive to provide for troops in your home. So, New Jersey protested saying that this law cost just as much as the Stamp Act. Of course, the soldiers stood there place and did nothing. This lead to, in 1767, The New York assembly deciding to not vote for any funds for salt, vinegar, and liquor. The British government did not let the assembly meet up until they decided to obey the Quartering Act.
Charles Townshend was the next leader to do the tough job of enforcing taxes. He believed he had to keep british troops in America due to colonists’ acting out. This of course angered the colonists because it meant they might have to face paying more taxes. And in 1767, Townshend got the Parliament to allow the Townshend Act, which put taxes on items including glass, paint, paper, and tea. The colonists’ anger increased after this Act had passed. Samule Adams, a Patriot who was also very upset about the Act as well, decided to write a letter to every single colony. The letter claimed that the duty breached the rights of colonists’ as British citizens. Colonists all decided to boycott these goods, which would hopefully help defend their rights. For the boycott, people avoided buying those items and made them themselves instead. Eventually in 1770, the Parliament dropped the taxes on all items except for tea. King George believed he still needed to place duties on the colonists.
The Boston Massacre
In Boston, an uproar occurred between the soldiers and colonists on the same day the Parliament was revoked. Five people were from Boston were dead and ten were hurt. Due to the incident, Britain sent four units of troops to keep Boston under control. The troops apparently did not stop the colonists from acting out one bit. Things greatly escalated when on March 5, 1770 a pack of colonists irked a troop of soldiers who were supervising the Boston Customs House. As a colonists attacked a guard, shots were fired by soldiers, killing colonists. Colonists thought that the British troops should be tried for murder. They also thought this incident should say that soldiers should be sent back to Britain. Adams said that the soldiers acted in self-defense. He defended the soldiers, even though he was most likely going to hurt his reputation.
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