While Congress and colonial assemblies passed resolutions and petitioned against the Stamp Act, the settlers took matters into their own hands. The most famous popular resistance took place in Boston, where opponents of the Stamp Act, who called themselves the Sons of Liberty, recruited the Boston mob against the new law. This crowd marched through the streets with a portrait of Andrew Oliver, the Boston stamp dealer, which they hung and beheaded on the Tree of Freedom before looting Oliver`s house. Oliver agreed to resign from his job as a stamp dealer. The first street protests were most notable in Boston. Andrew Oliver was a Massachusetts stamp dealer who was hung with the effigy “on a giant elm tree at the intersection of Essex and Orange Streets in the south of the city” on August 14, 1765. Also hanging was a carp boat painted green on the underside (“a Green Ville sole”), a play on words with Grenville and the Earl of Bute, the two people most blamed by the settlers. [64] Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson ordered Sheriff Stephen Greenleaf to remove the effigy, but it was rejected by a large crowd. Throughout the day, the crowds turned around the merchants on Orange Street to symbolically stamp their goods under the elm, which later became known as the “Liberty Tree.” Fortunately for America`s freedoms, newspapers were subject to a high stamp duty.

Printers, when influenced by the government, have generally positioned themselves on the side of freedom, and they are no less notable for paying attention to the profits of their profession. A stamp duty that openly penetrated the former and threatened a major downsizing of the latter provoked their united zealous resistance. [55] During this period of street protests, locally organized groups began to merge into an intercolonial organization never before seen in the colonies. The term “Son of Liberty” was widely used long before 1765, but it was not until February 1766 that its influence as a group organized under the official name “Son of Liberty” spread to all the colonies, leading to a pattern of future resistance to the British that carried the colonies around 1776. [85] Historian John C. Miller noted that the name was adopted as a result of Barre`s use of the term in his February 1765 speech. [86] For each skin or piece of parchment or parchment, sheet or sheet of paper on which they must be deepened, written or printed, any note or bill of lading to be signed for any type of goods, goods or merchandise from which they are to be exported. Within the said colonies and plantations, a stamp duty of four pence. Opposition to the Stamp Act was not limited to the colonies. British merchants and manufacturers put pressure on parliament because their exports to the colonies were threatened with boycott. The law was repealed on March 18, 1766 for reasons of expediency, but parliament reaffirmed its power to enact laws for the colonies “in any case” by also passing the Declaration Act.

A series of new taxes and regulations followed – also rejected by the Americans. The episode played an important role in defining the 27 colonial grievances clearly expressed in the text of the Indictment section of the United States Declaration of Independence, and facilitated the organized colonial resistance that led to the American Revolution in 1775. [8] [9] Massachusetts appointed a five-member correspondence committee in June 1764 to coordinate actions and exchange information on the Sugar Act, and Rhode Island formed a similar committee in October 1764. This attempt at unified action represented a significant advance in colonial unity and cooperation. The Virginia House of Burgesses sent a protest against the taxes to London in December 1764, arguing that they did not have the kind required to pay the tax. [45] Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and Connecticut also sent protests to England in 1764. The content of the messages varied, but they all pointed out that taxing settlements without colonial consent was a violation of their rights. By the end of 1765, the thirteen colonies, with the exception of Georgia and North Carolina, had sent some sort of protest, which had been passed by the colonial legislatures.

[46] Parliament announced in April 1764, when the Sugar Act was passed, that it would also consider stamp duty in the colonies. [24] Colonial resistance to this possible tax came soon, but neither members of parliament nor American agents in Britain (such as Benjamin Franklin) suspected the intensity of the protest the tax provoked. [25] Stamps Act. Parliament`s first direct tax on the American colonies, this law, as passed in 1764, was enacted to raise funds for Britain. He taxed newspapers, almanacs, pamphlets, broadsides, legal documents, dice, and playing cards. Stamps issued by Britain were affixed to documents or packages to show that the tax had been paid. The Glorious Revolution had established the principle of parliamentary supremacy. The control of colonial trade and colonial rulers extended this principle to the ocean. This belief had never been tested on the question of colonial taxation, but the British assumed that the interests of the thirteen colonies were so diverse that joint colonial action against such a tax was unlikely – a hypothesis that had its origins in the failure of the Albany Conference in 1754. At the end of December 1764 the first warnings of serious colonial resistance were issued by pamphlets and petitions from the colonies protesting against both the sugar law and the proposed stamp duty. [27] As news of the reasons for Andrew Oliver`s resignation spread, violence and threats of aggressive action increased in the colonies, as did organized resistance groups. In the colonies, members of the middle and upper classes of society formed the basis of these resistance groups and were soon called the Sons of Liberty.

These colonial resistance groups burned portraits of royal officials, forced stamp collectors to resign, and managed to persuade businessmen and judges to use appropriate stamps without the appropriate stamps required by parliament. [67] Determined that the imposition of the people by themselves or by persons chosen by themselves to represent them, who could not know what taxes the people could bear, or the simplest method of collecting them, and who were themselves affected by any tax imposed on the people, must be the only guarantee against onerous taxation, and the distinctive feature of British freedom, without which the old constitution cannot exist. Most printers were critical of the Stamp Act, although there were some loyalist voices. Some of the more subtle loyalist sentiments can be seen in publications such as the Boston Evening Post, run by British sympathizers John and Thomas Fleet. The article described a violent demonstration that took place in New York in December 1765, then described the participants in the uprising as “imperfect” and described the group`s ideas as “contrary to the general sense of the people.” [56] These loyalist beliefs can be seen in some of the early newspaper articles on the Stamp Act, but anti-British writings were more frequent and appear to have had a stronger effect. [57] The Stamp Act Congress was held in New York city in October 1765. Twenty-seven delegates from nine colonies were members of Congress, and their responsibility was to draft a series of formal petitions explaining why parliament did not have the right to tax them. [90] Among the delegates were many important men in the colonies.

Historian John Miller notes: “The composition of this Stamp Act Congress should have been convincing evidence for the British government that opposition to parliamentary taxation was in no way limited to the surroundings of colonial seaports.” [91] Stamp Acts have been a very effective method of taxation in the United Kingdom; They generated over £100,000 in tax revenue with very low collection expenses. By requiring an official stamp on most legal documents, the system was almost self-regulating; a document would be null and void under UK law without the required stamp. The imposition of such a tax on the colonies had been considered twice before the Seven Years` War and again in 1761. In fact, Grenville had received draft colonial stamp laws in September and October 1763, but the proposals lacked specific knowledge of colonial affairs to adequately describe the documents that were submitted to the stamp. When the Sugar Act was passed in April 1764, Grenville made it clear that the right to tax the colonies was not in question and that additional taxes could follow, including stamp duty. [26] Massachusetts Governor Francis Bernard believed that his colony`s delegates to Congress would support the legislature. Timothy Ruggles, in particular, was Bernard`s husband and was elected president of Congress. Bernard`s Ruggles instructions were to “recommend the introduction of the Stamp Act until Parliament can be persuaded to repeal it.” [95] Many delegates believed that a final resolution on the stamp act would in fact bring Britain and the colonies closer together. Robert Livingston of New York stressed the importance of removing the Stamp Act from public debate, writing to the agent of his colony in England: “If I really wanted to see America in a state of independence, I would like as one of the most effective means to that end that the Stamp Act be enforced.” [96] This 1774 print shows Boston settlers pouring tea down the throat of a loyalist official that they tarred and feathered. Tax commissioners were frequently threatened with tars and feathers as they attempted to enforce the Stamp Act of 1765, which imposed a tax on all official papers and documents in the American colonies. .