What Was the Boston Tea Party? by Kathleen KrullNo Taxation without Representation! The Boston Tea Party stands as an iconic event of the American Revolution—outraged by the tax on tea, American colonists chose to destroy the tea by dumping it into the water! Learn all about the famed colonialists who fought against the British Monarchy, and read about this act of rebellion from our history! With black-and-white illustrations throughout and sixteen pages of photos, the Boston Tea party is brought to life!
Boston Tea Party 1773 - 5 Minute History lesson - Quick Summary
7 Surprising Facts About the Boston Tea Party
The event was the first major act of defiance to British rule over the colonists. In the s, Britain was deep in debt, so British Parliament imposed a series of taxes on American colonists to help pay those debts. The Stamp Act of taxed colonists on virtually every piece of printed paper they used, from playing cards and business licenses to newspapers and legal documents. The Townshend Acts of went a step further, taxing essentials such as paint, paper, glass, lead and tea. The colonists, however, disagreed. They were furious at being taxed without having any representation in Parliament, and felt it was wrong for Britain to impose taxes on them to gain revenue.
But as with most well-trod origin stories, the true history of the Boston Tea Party is far more complicated than the grammar-school version, and the real facts of what happened on that fateful night in might surprise you. The confusion is partly timing and partly semantics. An American colonist reads with concern the royal proclamation of a tax on tea in the colonies as a British soldier stands nearby with rifle and bayonet, Boston,
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Why Did the Boston Tea Party Happen?
View All Announcements. Beaver Were the ships British? A popular misconception is the belief the Tea Party Ships were British. In fact, the vessels were built in America and owned by Americans, but the cargo of tea they were carrying from London to Boston was owned by the British East India Company. The Eleanor was one of several vessels owned by leading Boston merchant, John Rowe.
At nine o'clock on the night of December 16, , a band of Bostonians disguised as Native Americans boarded the British merchant ship Dartmouth and two companion vessels anchored at Griffin's Wharf in Boston harbor. The Americans, who numbered around 70, shared a common aim: to destroy the ships' cargo of British East India Company tea. Many years later George Hewes, a 31 — year — old shoemaker and participant, recalled "We then were ordered by our commander to open the hatches and take out all the chests of tea and throw them overboard. And we immediately proceeded to execute his orders, first cutting and splitting the chests with our tomahawks, so as thoroughly to expose them to the effects of the water. Their actions, which became known as the Boston Tea Party , set in motion events that led directly to the American Revolution — The Boston Tea Party was one of a long series of conflicts between the American colonies and the English government after the British victory in the French and Indian War — The French and Indian War was the last and most expensive of almost a century of colonial wars between France and England.
The Americans were protesting both a tax on tea taxation without representation and the perceived monopoly of the East India Company. The Townshend Acts passed by Parliament in and imposing duties on various products imported into the British colonies had raised such a storm of colonial protest and noncompliance that they were repealed in , saving the duty on tea, which was retained by Parliament to demonstrate its presumed right to raise such colonial revenue without colonial approval. The merchants of Boston circumvented the act by continuing to receive tea smuggled in by Dutch traders. The tea sent to the colonies was to be carried only in East India Company ships and sold only through its own agents, bypassing the independent colonial shippers and merchants. The company thus could sell the tea at a less-than-usual price in either America or Britain; it could undersell anyone else. The perception of monopoly drove the normally conservative colonial merchants into an alliance with radicals led by Samuel Adams and his Sons of Liberty.