American Documents: The Stamp Act Of 1765

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During the initial development of America officially gaining its independence from Britain, there were certainly some very high tensions growing within the colonies against English rule. With Britain enforcing taxes that the Americans deemed unfair and the Americans responding with protest, looking back retrospectively it seems that American independence was almost inevitable. The first example of British taxation in the colonies was the Sugar Act which imposed a higher tax on foreign imports; however, this kind of tax was not seen as unreasonable in the eyes of the Americans, it was what came after that stirred up the most trouble. The Stamp Act of 1765, the very first direct tax in all of colonial history, was the turning point for many Americans …show more content…

The document reads, “Agree to join us [the Patriots] and your persons and properties are safe … if you refuse, we are directly to cut up your corn, shoot your pigs, burn your house, seize your Negroes and perhaps tar and feather yourself.” This document from 1775 shows just how far American patriotism had come in comparison to the early 1600s. By that time the colonists were not afraid to display their disdain towards Britain, even going as far as intimidating and humiliating those that didn’t support their cause. This behavior is a long cry from the Americans who were content with being ruled by a king across the Atlantic. In document seven Thomas Paine writes about the tyranny of Britain’s ways as they continue to inflict their harsh rule on the colonies. Paine writes, “Britain, with an army to enforce her tyranny, has declared that she has a right (not only to tax) but to “bind us in all cases whatsoever.” During this time, Britain had the world’s best Navy, an expert army, as well as an entire empire to back them which certainly made their demands more likely to be met. It is clear that with this excerpt Paine was trying to invoke a passionate response from the American people to get them to rise up as one united unit against British tyranny. The author writes, “[...] he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like …show more content…

The first example of American unrest by the hands of the English was in 1763 with the Proclamation Line. This Proclamation Line outlawed any colonial settlement west of the Appalachians as a result of the newfound British and Amerindian peace. This rule, of course, upset American colonists because it limited the areas in which they were allowed to settle. They felt that after the years of loyalty to Great Britain and the Throne and all the battles they had fought for them, they should not have to sacrifice their own living conditions for the sake of Amerindians. Later, the English began to reenact their Navigation Act which allowed Britain to keep a monopoly on all trade in the colonies. This act prohibited American smugglers from trading with other colonies. This ruling was seen as an act of tyranny to American colonists because it opposed their law traditions. Though both the Proclamation Line and the Navigation Acts both played a part in swaying the American perspective of the British in the times before the Declaration of Independence was officially documented, the Stamp Act is what caused a huge uprising within the colonies. When the British enacted the Stamp Act, which put a tax on all stamps used in the colonies, it did not go over well with the Americans. Americans felt as though it

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