Long ago the United States was different than it is
today. It was not even a country. Instead, it was
A colony is a place ruled by another country. England governed (ruled) all the 13 colonies.
Geography of the 13 Colonies
The Colonies Feel Separate
People in each colony did not think they had
much in common with the other colonies. They
did not think they were Americans. The people in
New York considered themselves New Yorkers
and the people in Virginia called themselves
Virginians. They were not united.
French and Indian War
England wanted to expand the 13 colonies and began taking over more land. In the 1750s a war broke out between England and France for control over land Ohio River Valley and claim to the North American continent.
Native Americans in the area decided to join up with the French to help fight England under the belief that France would help them protect their land. Plus the French traders often treated the Native Americans with more respect.
The French and Indian War
The French and Indian War lasted for 7 long
years giving it the nickname “The Seven years
England eventually won the war for land against
the French and Indians in 1763.
Proclamation Line 1763
In order to end the war Britain (England) and France got together to sign an agreement called a treaty. The treaty that ended the French and Indian War was called the Treaty of Paris.
One of the most controversial parts of the treaty (agreement) was that England would not allow the colonists to move past the Appalachian Mountains and take more Indian land. This law that stopped the colonists from moving west of the Appalachian Mountains was called the Proclamation Line of 1763.
Seven Year War
Even though the Proclamation Line of 1763 upset the people of the 13 colonies, overall, the colonists were very happy that England had won the Seven Years War. They felt much safer.
England In Debt Due to War
However, fighting the French and Indian war was very expensive for England and King George III saw the colonies as his ticket out of debt
Money, money, money! MONEY!!
Paying for the War
King George began to create ridiculous taxes that the colonists would have to pay.
The idea was that this tax money was going to go back to England to help it recover some of the money lost during the French and Indian War. The colonists quickly grew very angry about the taxes they were now being forced to pay.
What are Taxes?
Taxes = the money collected by the government to pay for services
Why Were The Colonists So Angry About Taxes?
The colonists believed they should have a say in the taxes they were being forced to pay. However, there was no one in the English Parliament (government) that was there as a representative for the colonies. It wasn’t fair, so the colonists would shout…
“ No Taxation Without Representation”
Anyway, the first tax that King George decided he
was going to make the colonists pay was a tax on
all things made out of paper. This tax was called
the STAMP ACT.
The colonists tried to fight this by not buying the stamps. They also ran the stamp sellers out of town.
King George got very upset when he found out the colonists were refusing to pay the paper taxes created by the Stamp Act. The King and British parliament said, “ fine then, we will make you pay a new set of taxes called the Townshend Acts. Now under the Townshend Acts you will have to pay a tax on paper, glass, lead ANNNND tea!!!!”
The colonists got even more upset and refused to pay!!!
The colonists got so upset about the British taxes there were several stories about the colonists grabbing tax collectors dumping hot tar on them and then pour boiling hot tea down their throat. TARING THE TAX COLLECTORS
No Taxation without Representation We were just doing our job Mother! Look at those stupid tax collectors!
To help control the colonists, England sent over soldiers called “Redcoats” to monitor the colonists. Everyday tension (anger) grew between the colonists and the red coats.
On March 5, 1770, tensions finally exploded into violence in the streets.
Stop insulting me Hey lobster
A group of young men and dockworkers, one of whom was a African-American man name Crispus Attucks, began arguing in the streets with a group of English soldiers. A fight broke out, and the soldiers began firing into the crowd. Attucks and four other laborers were killed.
People began calling the shooting of 5 people a massacre. This incident became a tool for anti-British propaganda.
What is Propaganda?
Propaganda is information that is spread for the purpose of promoting some cause.
What was the cause/reason for calling the shooting of five people in Boston a massacre by the English soldiers?
The colonists protested (spoke out against) the taxes and these protests worked! England ended the stamp tax. But the troubles did not end. England passed more laws and taxes.
In 1773, England passed a tax on tea. Colonists in several colonies protested against the tax and boycotted the taxed products.
Boston Tea Party
The most famous of these protests against the tea tax was the Boston Tea Party. During the Boston Tea Party colonists dressed as Indians and boarded the ships that contained boxes of tea. They then tossed the crates into the Boston harbor.
Samuel Adams and The Sons of Liberty
A guy named Samuel Adams led a group called the Sons of Liberty. The Sons of Liberty went around the colonies protesting taxes and organizing boycotts ( Boycotts are where people refuse to buy a good)
In fact, it was Samuel Adams and the Sons of Liberty that organized the Boston Tea Party.
Closing the Harbor
After the Boston Tea Party, England punished the people of Boston. England closed the Boston Harbor. This meant that ships could not go in or out.
To stop the colonists from organizing, town meetings were outlawed. The colonists felt they were losing their freedom.
I can’t believe he is going to close the harbor so we can’t fish
Closing the Boston Harbor was just one part of what the colonists called the Intolerable Acts. They could not tolerate (accept) these ridiculous laws England was passing to control the colonies.
We cant tolerate this!
Please Stop the Taxes!
Colonists from 12 of the colonies held a meeting anyway in Philadelphia (This meeting was the First Continental Congress Meeting). They wanted to stay loyal to the King of England. They decided to send a letter to him asking him to end the tax on tea.
The King refused to read the letter and responded by sending ships full of English soldiers to Boston.
Lets Send King George III a Letter asking him to stop taxing us
NEVER!! You need to be punished for your actions.. I’m sending soldiers!!! Letter from the 1 st continental Congress
Minutemen for Militias!
The colonists claimed it didn’t matter that England was sending soldiers because they could fight in a minute’s notice. These colonists were called minutemen.
Some minutemen hid weapons in Concord Massachusetts. (It’s a town near Boston). But the English soldiers (or redcoats) soon learned about the weapons.
The British head to Concord
On the night of April 18, 1775, the British soldiers (redcoats) marched to Concord, Massachusetts to take the weapons from the colonial minutemen.
Get me your weapons Nope
Give us your weapons!! No!
There were several patriots in the colonies. A patriot was colonist who wanted independence freedom) from England. A famous patriot was named Paul Revere. Revere was willing to risk his life to fight against England for freedom.
I’m Paul revere and I'm a patriot
THE BRITISH ARE COMING!!
As the redcoats headed to Concord, Massachusetts Paul Revere and another rider mounted their horses. They then rode as fast as they could toward Lexington and Concord Massachusetts yelling “The British are coming!! The British are coming!!!”
Paul Revere was able to wake up enough of the colonial minutemen so they would be prepared to fight.
The British are coming!
Lexington and Concord
The next day on April 19, 1775 the English redcoats and colonial minutemen began to fight at in an open field at Lexington and Concord.
The shots fired at Lexington and Concord in 1775 would represent the start of the American Revolution. America was on the road to freedom from England!!
Lexington and Concord 1775
University of Massachusetts
The year is 1765. Your neighbors are enraged by Britain's
attempt to tax them without the consent (agreement).
Britain has never done this before and everyone will be
affected by the new taxes. Write a postcard to your friend
who is a minuteman living in Concord discussing the
1) Why is King George taxing the people in the 13 colonies?
2) What tax do you hate the most?
3) What were the Sons of Liberty doing when you saw them at the Boston Harbor?
4) Why did the British Soldiers come to Concord Massachusetts?
5) How do you feel about Paul Revere waking you up at midnight? Why?