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American Revolution

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1.)Why were most Americans content with their role within the British Empire in the 1750s? What evidence of discontent did exist?

Most Americans were content with their role in the British Empire because Britain had provided them opportunities for trade and commerce, military protection, and political stability. Because of neglect by the British the trade restrictions decreased. In the colonies, people were allowed to trade unlimitedly with little tax to whomever they chose. Military protection and support was another benefit of the British Empire for the colonies. Britain provided soldiers and generals for the colonies during the 7 years war to help assist them defeat the French and Indians. They also did not pour troops into the colonies without a reason, like the war, which allowed the colonists more freedom and a sense of independence.

This period of neglect also led to American assemblies in the 1750s. American assemblies were allowed to levy taxes, pass laws, make budgets, and appoint officials. These assemblies began to show the colonists that they were capable of governing themselves. Although Britain provided these benefits discontent started to arise after the seven years war. After the war, Parliament realized the colonies may have become too independent because of the period of neglect and King George enacts many acts. Several colonists because of the war and British policies that were enacted also began to realize the illicitness of England’s impediment in the colonies.

3.) Some historians have argued that the American Revolution was the result of a constitutional conflict over the relationship between the mother country and the colonies. How does the colonial reaction to British attempts to regulate commerce after 1763 support this interpretation?

After the 7 years war ended, England began to tighten its hold on the colonies by enacting acts and policies for the colonies such as the sugar act and the stamp act. The Sugar act was enabled to stop the illegal trade of sugar between the colonies and the French and Spanish West Indies. With little tax and trade restrictions during the long period of neglect the colonists were dissatisfied with the new act. The Sugar Act also weakened the market for sugar cultivated in the colonies. The Stamp Act also contributed to the conflict between England and the colonies by imposing tax on printed documents in the colonies.

Although the results of this act did not greatly affect the economy of the colonies the colonists began to see that Britain was raising money in the colonies without the approval of colonial assemblies. It also showed the colonies that if Britain was able to pass the new tax without much resistance more oppressive taxes could arise in the future. This created many petitions and protests of not only the stamp and sugar act, but other acts in the future like the tea act which was a major product to the American Revolution.

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