Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Original Tea Party

"These rustics are so inept. It nearly takes the honor out of victory. Nearly."
--Lord General Cornwallis (The Patriot)

Interesting background on the original Boston Tea Party staged in late 1773. The TP was a response to British attempt to monopolize tea trade w/ the colonies via the East India Company, and to exact taxes from this restricted trade. Predictably, a black market quickly formed w/ Dutch tea, which threated the British position.

As a response, the Tea Act was enacted on top of the previously implemented Townshend Acts to collect duties on all tea entering the colonies. Chatter circulated among the colonies that this was but one small step toward comprehensive tax tyranny by the British government.

The Tea Party occured in Boston because this was the only tea port where colonists could not strong arm colonial consigners into withdrawing from reselling tea for the East India Company.

An interesting tidbit is that the Tea Partiers were careful to destroy only the tea. They were mindful of other private property on the boats.

Following the Tea Party, Britain enacted the Coercive Acts (called the Intolerable Acts by colonists) in 1774. These acts sought to more forcefully exert British rule over the colonies. But these acts of force only strengthened colonial resolve against authoritarian rule.

7 comments:

dgeorge12358 said...

It does not take a majority to prevail... but rather an irate, tireless minority, keen on setting brushfires of freedom in the minds of men.
~Samuel Adams

Katie Ford Hall said...

Did you know that some of them dressed up like Indians to disguise themselves? That's always bothered me.

-K

fordmw said...

Seems like it worked...

Katie Ford Hall said...

Give me liberty or blame the Indians??

fordmw said...

i believe it is called a disguise...

Katie Ford Hall said...

And the disguise was used in case there were repercussions. The British would blame the Indians. In my book, that's called cowardly.

fordmw said...

Let's get this straight. Colonists have for months signaled to British that they will not not offload tea and have threatened colonial merchants if they distribute.

After vocal rally' of hundreds on a Dec day, 60 people, some wearing Mohawk dress/paint, go down to the harbor and dump tea off 3 ships for hrs in plain sight of onlookers.

And the idea is that British will blame Indians for the event?