pols_ch2 - The First Founding o Major Themes elements of...

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The First Founding     o Major Themes (& elements of Constitution) Liberty Equality Democracy o 5 Sectors of society with interests important in colonial politics New England merchants Southern planters „royalists“—holders of royal lands, offices, & patents shopkeepers, artisans, and laborers small farmers o Throughout the 18th century these groups were in conflict over  issues of taxation, trade, & commerce o The groups of the southern planters, New England merchants, and  the „royalists“ made up what was known as the colonial elite.  After  1750, British tax and trade policies split the colonial elite, permitting  radical forces to expand their political influence, and set into motion  a chain of events that sparked the American Revolution. o 1750s—British gov’t searching for sources of revenue to pay off  debts; 1760s—Britain sought to impose new taxes on colonies o During this time, gov’ts relied on tariffs, duties, and other taxes to  collect revenue; the income tax had not yet been developed. Stamp Act Sugar Act of 1764—taxes sugar, molasses, & other  commodities o Merchants and planters sought to organize opposition to the new  taxes—„ No taxation without representation o The planters and merchants broke with their royalist allies and  turned to (their former adversaries) the shopkeepers, small farmers,  laborers, and artisans for help.  With the help of these groups, the  planters and merchants boycotted British goods and forced the  Crown to rescind most of its new taxes
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o The more radical forces (shopkeepers, artisans, laborers, small  farmers) continued to agitate for political/social change within the  colonies.  These radicals, including Samuel Adams, advocated an  end to British rule. o 1773—Britain granted the (politically powerful) East India Company  a monopoly on the export of tea from Britain.  Later comes the  Boston Teas Party of 1773, led by Samuel Adams . o All this, causing a cycle of retailiation, led to the convening of The  First Continental Congress in 1774 .  This was an assembly that  called for a total boycott of British goods and began to consider the  possibility of independence from British rule.  The eventual result  was the Declaration of Independence. The Declaration of Independence     o 1776—the Second Continental Congress appointed a committee  consisting of  Thomas Jefferson (VA), Benjamin Franklin (PA),  Roger Sherman (CT), John Adams (MA), and Robert Livingston  (NY)  to draft a statement of American independence.
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