Colonies In The 18th Century

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For most of the 18th century Britain had a solid hold on its colonies in the new world. Most colonists, at the time had a strong sense of pride for the mother country, and considered themselves to be British subjects. However, this view would begin to change dramatically at the end of the French and Indian war. Not long after the end of the war these loyalist views would begin to change as Britain began its effort to survive economically after the war. Although they now had control over much of North America, they did not have control over their debt. This led to a string of events that would change colonial views dramatically in the colonies and even led to the creation of a new country, the United States of America. In short, colonial views…show more content…
One example where these loyalist views can be found is in the Albany Plan of 1754. The plan called for a union of the colonies to help defend against the French (and Indians), and would have allowed the Colonies many aspects of sovereignty (like managing an army, making laws, imposing taxes, indian affairs.) However, this plan would have still kept the colonies under British rule; something that many colonists were in favor off . For example many colonists endorsed the use of troops against the French, and some even enlisted in the British army during the war. However, once the Treaty of Paris was signed in 1763, problems soon erupted that began to change the views and actions of some colonists, and the issues of taxes and representation played a large role. As previously stated, the French and Indian war left a large debt on Great Britain, and they needed a way to pay for it. Given that many Americans paid much lower taxes than the British (An average American colonist paid one shilling in taxes, to a Briton’s 24) the crown felt it would be necessary for the Americans to pay for the cost of defending the newly acquired territory. Unfortunately…show more content…
These acts led to more unrest, including more boycotting of English goods, and an emphasis on American manufacturers over those from the home country. It also led to widespread protests in the Boston area, which resulted in British troops being stationed there (and the Boston Massacre, which resulted in the eventual appeal of the Townshend acts). In his 1768 letter “From a Farmer” John Dickenson makes the case against the Townshend acts, and called them unconstitutional and as destructive to the liberty of the colonies as the previous acts (like the revenue and stamp acts). He also mentions how these actors broke precedent in not being based on imposing duties on trade but were rather for the purpose of raising
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