Various Phenomena counted as a Step Towards War

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This booklet addresses the different phenomena counted as a step towards war. It describes the condition, situation, impacts, and other consequences that occurred.
1. Boston Massacre
The trial of the British soldiers
Conflicting views of the event
Boston Tea Party
Intolerable Acts
First Continental Congress
2. Paul Revere’s engraving of the Boston Massacre
March 5, 1770
3. Tension in Boston erupted in violence
The British military occupation of
Boston resulted in the “Boston
Apparently, several local youths
began hurling snowballs at British
sentries. Other Boston residents
joined in.
The British soldiers moved into
formation, and although ordered by
their commander not to fire on the
crowd, they did so.
Five colonists killed by the British
4. The Colonist version The British version
The left, demonstrates the colonial view of the massacre, with the
British appearing to be the aggressors. The right, shows the colonists
armed and the British soldiers more in a defensive posture.
Without photographic evidence both sides could interpret the event
to their advantage.
5. The dead colonists
Crispus Attucks: Generally
believed to be a runaway
slave, he is featured
prominently in several of
the engravings of the
Massacre, and is
considered in legend to be
the first casualty in the
American Revolution.
Crispus Attucks
6. The trial of the British soldiers
In October 1770, a trial was
held in colonial court
accusing several of the
British soldiers involved in
the shootings with murder.
Six of the soldiers were
found innocent of any
charges. Two were
convicted on manslaughter
charges and were punished
by having their thumbs
John Adams, branded. Their captain,
defense attorney Preston, was acquitted
for the British because the jury couldn’t be
soldiers. Later was sure that he ordered his
elected the second troops to fire into the
president of the
United States.
7. December 16, 1773
8. Causes of the Boston Tea Party
 Under pressure, Parliament repealed the
Townshend Acts, but still taxed tea
 In 1773, the British Government passed the Tea
Act, which gave the British East India Company a
monopoly on tea sales by allowing them to sell
tea at a lower price than their competitors
 The theory was that the colonists would accept
the tax more readily if they were able to get tea
from the East India Company at a lower price
 However colonial leaders in Boston protested,
and cargoes of tea on ships were held in Boston
9. The Tea Party
After the tea would not be
removed from Boston
Harbor, 50 members of the
Sons of Liberty, led by
Samuel Adams, dressed
up like Mohawk Indians
and boarded the ships.
Throwing 342 chests of
tea overboard into the
Harbor; worth more than
10,000 pounds sterling.
1 pound sterling = Roughly $1.50
10. An eyewitness account
“In about three hours from the time we went on board, we
had thus broken and thrown overboard every tea chest to
be found in the ship, while those in the other ships were
disposing of the tea in the same way, at the same time. We
were surrounded by British armed ships, but no attempt
was made to resist us.
...The next morning, after we had cleared the ships of the
tea, it was discovered that very considerable quantities of
it were floating upon the surface of the water; and to
prevent the possibility of any of its being saved for use, a
number of small boats were manned by sailors and
citizens, who rowed them into those parts of the harbor
wherever the tea was visible, and by beating it with oars
and paddles so thoroughly drenched it as to render its
entire destruction inevitable."
George Hewes, Tea Party
11. Class Activity:
Was the Boston Tea Party an
one of a kind event?
QuickTime™ and a
TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor
are needed to see this picture.
12. The Intolerable Acts
What do you think is going on in this political cartoon?
13. Purposes of the Intolerable Acts
 Passed in response to the Boston Tea Party
by Parliament in 1774
 Officially called the “Coercive Acts”, but
they were nicknamed the “Intolerable Acts” in
the colonies
 They were designed to punish the colony of
Massachusetts until the tea destroyed in the
Boston Tea Party was paid for
14. "Intolerable Acts," one of which closed the
port of Boston. In this print the artist
symbolized the closing of the port by placing
the Bostonians in a cage suspended from the
Liberty Tree. One of the men in the cage holds
a paper inscribed "They cried unto the Lord in
their Trouble & he saved tham out of their
Distress. Psalm cvii 13." This scriptural
passage may be a reference to the religious
heritage of Massachusetts.
The three men in the small boat attempting to
feed the hungry men in the cage represent the
other American colonies that sent supplies to
aid the citizens of Boston during the crisis.
The fish have been placed on the ends of poles
that are then thrust through the bars of the
cage. British soldiers on the shore with
cannons, and warships in the harbor
symbolize the continued blockade.
Although published in a London paper, people
on both sides of the conflict could have
viewed this print favorably. A patriot viewer
might see the print as a representation of the
"poor Bostonians," caged and starving
because of Great Britain's unfair policies and
restrictions. A loyalist viewer might see the
print as depicting a "we've got them now"
attitude, showing colonists boxed in by their
own illegal actions and paying the appropriate
consequences for defying the authority of the
15. The major laws considered “intolerable”
Boston Port Act: Closed the Port at Boston Harbor until
the tea was paid for.
 Quartering Act: Forced the citizens of Massachusetts to
house and feed British soldiers in their homes.
 Massachusetts Government Act: Suspended the
Massachusetts Colonial Legislature until the tea was paid
 Administration of Justice Act: Guaranteed that British
officials would not be tried in colonial courts for capital
16. The British government attempted to restore
order in Boston through martial law
 Another result of
the Boston Tea Party
was that the
Massachusetts colony
was placed under
martial law
QuickTime™ and a
TIFF (Uncompressed) decompressor
are needed to see this picture.
 In martial law,
military authority
usually takes the place
of civilian justice
17. Delegates from 12 colonies (all except Georgia) met
to discuss the situation with Britain in the fall of 1774.
They met at Carpenters’
Hall in Philadelphia in
what became known as
the “First Continental
Congress” to convince
Parliament to repeal the
Intolerable Acts.
Delegates included John
Adams, Benjamin
Franklin, Samuel
Adams, George
Washington, Richard
Henry Lee, and John Jay. Carpenters Hall
18. Continental Congress’ Resolutions
The Congress did not intend to
declare independence from
Britain. The delegates believed
that they were entitled to the
same rights as all Englishmen and
that the Intolerable Acts and
other laws violated those rights.
At the conclusion of the Congress,
the delegates signed non-
importation agreements
boycotting British goods. In
addition, they pledged to meet
again in 1775 if the Intolerable
Acts were not repealed.
However, before the delegates
could meet again, the
Revolutionary War had begun, and
the Second Continental Congress
found itself occupied with the
conduct of a war rather than
repeal of the Intolerable Acts. The Non-Importation agreement
19. This painting of Patrick Henry addressing the First
Continental Congress can be found in the House
Corridor of the United States Capitol.