American Revolution: primary sources by Barbara Bigelow

By Barbara Bigelow

A suite of annotated records when it comes to the yankee Revolution, together with speeches, autobiographical textual content, and proclamations.

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Former prime minister William Pitt (1708–1778) became a hero in America for his passionate speech in favor of the 22 American Revolution: Primary Sources repeal of the Stamp Act. In 1765, when the Act was passed, Pitt was sixty-seven years old and suffering from the mental illness that would continue to plague him for the remainder of his life. Some historians believe this condition was manic-depression, a type of mental illness in which a person suffers severe and prolonged mood swings. Pitt was well enough at the time Parliament was debating the repeal of the Stamp Act to speak in favor of it.

New York: Collier Books, 1962. 18 American Revolution: Primary Sources The Declaratory Act Issued by British Parliament Passed on March 18, 1766; excerpted from Documents of American History, 1958 I n March 1765, the British Parliament passed the Stamp Act to raise money in America to help pay for British soldiers stationed there. The Stamp Act, scheduled to go into effect on November 1, 1765, taxed printed matter such as newspapers, legal documents, and even dice and playing cards. Much to Parliament’s surprise, Americans protested the tax in the strongest terms, in many cases resorting to violence against British officials in America.

The Act continues with a list of other taxed items. It then declares that the monies raised will be used to pay for “defend28 American Revolution: Primary Sources ing, protecting, and securing, the British colonies and plantations in America” and can also be used for other expenses. ] It is lawful for any officer of his Majesty’s customs, authorized by writ of assistance under the seal of his Majesty’s court of exchequer, to take a constable, headborough, or other public officer inhabiting near unto the place, and in the daytime to enter and go into any house, shop, cellar, warehouse, or room or other place and, in case of resistance, to break open doors, chests, trunks, and other package there, to seize, and from thence to bring, any kind of goods or merchandise whatsoever prohibited or unaccustomed, and to put and secure the same in his Majesty’s storehouse next to the place where such seizure shall be made.

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