Stamp Act Facts

Stamp Act Facts
In order to pay from the large wartime debut incurred during the French and Indian War (1756-1763), and also to keep a large military force in North America mobilized, the British Parliament passed the Stamp Act of 1765. The Act required that most printed materials be purchased from Britain with an official stamp and could only be paid for with British currency, not colonial paper money. The Stamp Act was viewed as onerous and odious by the American colonists for a number of reasons: it amounted to being a tax that was forced on them without representation, most felt there was no need for the tax, and American printing and financial interests would be hurt by the tax. The Stamp Act led to the first widespread protests against British rule in North America, both on an official level with the formation of the Stamp Act Congress, and on a more underground level with the formation of the Sons of Liberty. Although the Stamp Act was repealed on March 18, 1765, just four days short of its one year anniversary, it created a permanent rift between the colonists and the mother country.
Interesting Stamp Act Facts:
Many influential British military officers favored the tax, as they did not want to be demobilized and sent back to England.
The Stamp Act partially paid to garrison about 10,000 British soldiers on what was at the time the western frontier.
Most Americans did not fear a French or Indian invasion and therefore thought that the tax was a waste.
The Stamp Act Congress was held in October 1765 in New York City. The legislatures of the colonies of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and South Carolina sent delegates.
The Stamp Act Congress was the first organized efforts to oppose British rule in North America and paved the way for the later Continental Congress
Street protests, some violent, became widespread, especially in Boston.
Many members of the colonial government in Boston, most notably Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson, had their homes destroyed during the unrest.
The Sons of Liberty was born during the Stamp Act street protest, making the term "no taxation without representation" popular in the American lexicon.
The Sons of Liberty was a decentralized movement, comprised of autonomous cells, which made it extremely difficult for the British authorities to stop and/or monitor.
The Stamp Act was actually never enforced because protestors forced the stamp collectors to resign their positions.
Some notable American Revolutionary leaders who got their starts with the Sons of Liberty were the following: Samuel Adams, Benedict Arnold, John Hancock, Patrick Henry, and Paul Revere.
Besides seeing themselves as unfairly taxed, many Americans, especially those in the printing industry, thought that the Stamp Act was an assault on American newspapers and press.
One of the primary reasons why the Stamp Act was repealed was due to economic pressure. American business and political leaders promoted a boycott of British goods, which they called "non-importation."


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