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Building Colonial Unity
Transcript of Building Colonial Unity
Trouble in Boston
Britain knew that the Americans were getting feisty. In response, they did what all empires do- they sent in the troops to occupy their troublesome colony- particularly Boston.
The Boston Massacre
On March 5, 1770, a fight broke out between a small group of redcoats and a Bostonian mob.
No one knows exactly what happened- the mob was angry at the redcoats for occupying their city. They threw clubs, snowballs, and ice at the soldiers.
They screamed "fire you bloodybacks, you lobsters!" After a soldier was knocked down, one of the soldiers fired which led to the rest of them firing.
Five colonists were killed, among them a black dockworker named Crispus Attucks.
The Word Spreads
In a perfect example of propaganda, a silversmith named Paul Revere made a woodcutting of the event showing the Redcoats cold-heartedly gunning down innocent civilians.
This spread through all the newspapers.
Sensing the unrest, the British government repealed the Townshend Acts except for the tax on tea.
Defense of the Redcoats
The British soldiers underwent trial- a local lawyer named John Adams defended them despite the fact that he himself wanted independence. All but two were proven not guilty, and those two's only punishment was to have their thumbs branded.
You will find in the next few weeks that Mr. Bailey really likes John Adams.
In 1773 (three years after the Boston massacre), the most important company in Great Britain, the British East India Company, faced ruin. They were a massive company- it would be like if Apple, Microsoft, General Motors, and Shell were one company- think about how bad it would be for the American economy if all those companies went out of business.
To save the company, Britain passed a law, the
, preventing colonists from buying tea from anyone else.
Boston Tea Party
You can imagine how the colonists felt about that- on December 16th, 1773, the Sons of Liberty (led by Samuel Adams) in Boston boarded an East India Company ship at night, dressed as Indians, and threw 342 chests of tea overboard. The
Boston Tea Party
After hearing news of the Boston Tea Party,
King George III
declared "we must master them or totally leave them alone."
Britain passed the
- Closed down Boston Harbor
-Bostonians must shelter soldiers
-No more town meetings.
-Any British soldier accused of a crime will go back to England for his trial
The colonists had another name for these acts- the