The American Revolution Analysis
What many find interesting is not the American Revolution itself, rather the events that led up to the eventual revolt against the British government.In fact in 1762, many would not even be able to foreshadow the revolution that would come to be in the British territories in America during the year 1776. The surprising part is that the colonies were not under any sort of crisis.The colonies were prospering economically finding new ventures with which to earn high incomes. Nor were the colonies struggling for religious freedom, for King George III was seen to be less despotic than his predecessors of the previous centuries.
In order for a revolution to occur, usually a form of bonding or unity is formed between those who are fighting against a common enemy, much like the phrase under one common enemy all foes become friends. The colonies in America were unable to properly unite even in the common threat that they faced against the French and Indians during the mid 1700s.This can be seen by the failure to unite the colonies under the Albany Plan of Union created by Benjamin Franklin, which featured the famous slogan, ” Join, or Die,” in order to unite the colonies in the struggle against the French and Indians. Now the question arises, if the colonists were so unsuccessful in uniting when faced with an imminent and urgent threat in 1754, then how did they, in such a short span of time, changed everything to fight against Great Britain.Before this point in history, many of the colonists took great pride in calling themselves English subjects.
What happened to change this sense of pride and forcing these men and women to keep their differences aside and unite to fight for their independence?Contrary to popular believe, much did in fact occur in the span of time between 1763 and 1776.The colonist felt as if they were being watched over like slaves are by their masters.They felt as if they were being taxed unfairly, and when they were attempting to have their grievances addressed by means of formal documentation such as the Declaration of Independence, they were ignored.Furthermore, religious issues came about and caused even more tension, and the economy became the central discussion in debates. In 1765, the colonist witnessed the first internal tax that was placed on the colonists by the British government.
The Stamp Act, which placed a tax on all documents made of paper sold in the colonies. Although the citizens of Britain were charged higher than the colonists, Great Britain justified taxing the colonists by stating that they had to pay for the debt that they are in because of the seven year war with France.The only way to make up some of the revenues needed was through the taxation of the American colonists.What brought the colonists to the brink of their patience that the notion that only their own representatives can tax them and that the taxation by the British was unconstitutional.This notion led to further mob violence which led to the increasing fear in tax collectors and resignation of their positions.Although the British governments took back the Act, it instead put forth an act known as the Declaratory Act which helped reconfirm the authority of the British government over the colonies.
Some might argue that this situation did not directly affect the uprising in the American Revolution 10 years later,but contrary to this belief the that taxation was probably the first event that had a significant role in the occurrence of the American Revolution. After the situation that occurred during the Stamp Act, there was a line of tension between the colonists and the British government. Although it may seem as if the repealing of the Act might have dismissed the tension, the British Parliament could not afford to let the colonists know that they had more authority than the British government.Right after they repealed the Stamp Act the government decided to go ahead and pass the Declaratory Act.The primary goal of this Act was “to bind the colonies in all cases whatsoever.” Basically, the government was telling the colonists that never will they forgo their claim on this territory and they shall always have superior authority over all thirteen colonies.
Although many seemed please with the repealing of the Stamp Act, they found the Declaratory Act to be very threatening. Most colonists, however, were able to accept that fact that Great Britain had a higher authority when it came to claims to ownership over the colonies, but taxation without representation was something that almost every colonist had negative feelings about. The British Government would not accept this, and wanted total control of all thirteen colonies, including the right to tax when they felt the need to do so. In London we see Charles Townshend showing the House of Commons that there is a need to once again tax the American colonists, and this time on more than just paper.Charles Townshend, the founder of the idea, was willing to sponsor the Townshend Acts, which passed by the parliament. Charles believed that this Act will metaphorically kill two birds with one stone.
It will reassert British dominance over the colonies while also bringing in much needed revenues through taxation by the British on the colonist.Townshend also felt the need to appoint an American Board of Customs Commissioner, which would make sure that the colonies were following and paying the tax based on the policies noted in the Act.Interestingly, the officials who were part of this group were given extra income when they captured smugglers who refused to pay the tax on the goods.As time progressed, Townshend seemed to be gaining confidence in his policy because now he went ahead and suspended the New York legislature because they did not provide sufficient supplies for the British troops stationed in New York.This seemed to mark the point at which colonists could not take it anymore.
Once again, the suppressed emotions that occurred during the Stamp Act Crisis came out and illegal activities skyrocketed.The custom officers and tax collectors were victims of mob harassment. One major event that led to the eventual revolution can be attributed to the ever so famous Boston Massacre.As many historians noted the Boston Massacre that occurred in 1770 was only one in a series of events that led the colonists to rise up against Great Britain.Although, it is one event, it can be noted as one of the most crucial events in the history of the revolution.Although before this time the British found themselves in dispute with the colonists, never before did either sides of the battle take on a physical approach, hence marking the Boston Massacre as one of the first argument involving arms.
The Boston Massacre can be considered a mere fight on the street that occurred on March 5, 1770.The colonists, who considered themselves the “patriots”, fought against the British soldiers using, as US History records it, “snowballs, stones, and sticks.” After this assault many of the colonists resented the presence of any troops from the British Army in Boston.Although the Boston Massacre did not directly start the Revolutionary War, it did however, mark a signal that led to the eventual Revolutionary War.The event led to the evacuation of the British army from the town of Boston. Although in the beginning many did not take into account the difficulties that were present due to the distance between the colonies and Great Britain, it did in fact over time seem to be becoming a rather big difficulty.
Due to the distance between the two pieces of land, it took time for the Parliament to respond to any threats or retaliations on part of the colonists.The constant threat of British abuse of power led the colonists to such a point that after some time both nations reached a point with no return.Indeed, the American Revolution was not instantaneous, rather it took time and many events before even the notion of war came to mind. http://www.ushistory.org/declaration/related/massacre.htm http://www.ushistory.org/us/9.asp