www.whyville.net Nov 28, 2002 Weekly Issue

American History

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American History

Guest Writer

In my history class we studied the Revolutionary War. We learned about some events that led to the American Revolution. First off, some of you may not know some of this: the colonies in North America were founded by many different countries (some of the colonies were named New Sweden, New France, "New" etc, before they were taken over by the British). The thirteen original colonies were: Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New Hampshire.

The French and Indian War was fought in North America. It was between Britain and France -- who both had Native American allies (hence the name French and INDIAN War). The British colonists defended themselves and were joined by the British army. British King George III thought that since the colonists were being protected that they should pay taxes to help pay off war depts. The colonists felt differently.

The British had what is called Parliament. The Parliament was made up of representatives and the colonists were not part of that. Their views were not represented in the Parliament and therefore they thought that they should not be taxed. "No taxation without representation" means that they wouldn't pay taxes without being represented in Parliament.

As I said, the King started imposing taxes on the colonists. The colonists believed they had certain natural (unalienable) rights -- there's a vocab word fer ya ;) -- that could not be taken away from them. These acts/taxes made them feel as if their rights were being jeopardized. These helped the start the American Revolution:

  • Proclamation of 1763
    • colonists could not settle west of the Appalachian Mountains
    • natural rights ("life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness") violated

  • Stamp Act (1765)
    • a tax on printed paper (marriage license, newspaper, playing cards, diplomas, & other official documents; put a stamp on them to say the owner paid a tax on it)
    • natural rights ("life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness") violated

  • Boston Massacre (1770)
    • an angry mob protested in front of a British Customs House, a detail of British troops came to help... a colonist threw a snowball that made a soldier fall down, and another soldier fired... others followed suit. Result: 5 colonists died.
    • natural rights ("life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness") violated

  • Tea Tax (1770)
    • King George III said that only tea from the British East India Company could be sold in the colonies (this led to the Boston Tea Party).
    • natural rights ("life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness") violated

    LAST ONE! =)

  • Coercive Acts (also known as the Intolerable Acts, in the colonies) 1773
    • closed the Boston Harbor (until the money that was lost because of people throwing the tea in the Boston Tea Party was paid off)
    • resulted in Quartering Act (where colonists had to take in British soldiers and house them, feed them, etc.)
    • the 1st Continental Congress requested Americans to boycott.
    • natural rights ("life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness") violated

That's all, folks!

This is shnngstar, saying, "I hope you didn't fall asleep... you could really ruin your keyboard that way!!"



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