The Stamp Act Riots
The Stamp Act was an important act introduced by the British prime minister George Grenville and it was passed in March 1765 by the British Parliament. Its purpose was to raise money for the British army stationed in the American colonies. The Stamp Act required tax stamps for public documents such as, newspapers, legal documents, customs documents, licenses, playing cards, deeds, and almanacs. Since Britain was left with a large national debt from the Seven Years’ War, the British government felt that since the colonies benefited that they should contribute to the expenses. The American colonies acted strongly against this matter.
During the Summer of 1765, there were many protests in the colonies. These protests involved everyone from civic leaders to street mobs. In many cities and towns the slogan became “no taxation without representation.” The Sons of Liberty were a secret organization that often organized these protests. Many acts of violence and a lot of pressure was centered towards the Stamp Agents. By fall almost all stamp agents resigned. The Virginia Assembly declared that the Stamp Act was unjust and illegal. The assembly passed resolutions against taxation’s by the British Parliament. The Massachusetts House of Representatives invited all of the colonies to send delegates to a general congress. The colonies that accepted the invitation and sent delegates to the general congress were New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Maryland, Delaware, Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, and Massachusetts. In October of 1765 in New York City a Stamp Act Congress was held. The Stamp Act Congress declared that stamp taxes could not be collected without the people’s consent and that the colonists’ right to be taxed was only by their own elected representatives. Merchants agreed not to import British goods until the law was repealed. That leaded to the British Parliament being bombarded by petitions from English merchants not...
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