How England Instigated the Revolutionary War
Uploaded by tyson_626 on Feb 10, 2005
Soon after England established the colonies in the New World, it began a period of salutary neglect. The English rarely intervened with colonial business. It was during this time that the colonies began gradually to think and act independently of England. This scared England, and initiated a period in which they became more involved in the colony's growth. Parliament tried o establish power in the New World by issuing a series of laws. The passage of these laws undermined the Colonist's loyalty to Britain and stirred the Americans to fight for their freedom.
Before 1763, the only British laws that truly affected the colonists were the Navigation Acts, which monitored the colony's trade so that it traded solely with England. As this law was not rigidly enforced, the colonists accepted it with little fuss. The colonies also accepted England's right to monitor trade. The change of course in 1767 was what really riled the colonists. England began to slowly tighten its imperial grip to avoid a large reaction from the colonists. Additional problems began when England passed the Writs of Assistance, which gave British officials the right to seize illegal goods, and to examine any building or ship without proof of cause (The American Revolution, pg.62). This was a powerful weapon against smuggling, but most importantly to the Colonists; it allowed the invasion of their privacy. This was crossing the line and violating the rights of an English man. During the Seven Years War, the British sent over ten thousand troops to America to deal with property problems at the frontier. This cost a large amount of money, and Britain did not want to see the sum come out of its own pocket. To pay for some of the expense, Britain began to pass acts to tax the colonists and lighten the severe debt the empire was in.
The Sugar Act of 1764 was an example of a tax that had many affects on the Colonial lifestyle. The act stated that any foreign exportation of lumber or skin had to first land in Britain. It also raised the price of imported sugar from the Indies (The American Revolution, pg.74). This act was accompanied by a strict enforcing of the former Navigation Acts due to the sudden increase of smuggling. This enhanced the tension between England and the New World. "The law also changed trials for offenders; they were held away from the...