Popular movements both ignited the fire that led to the Revolution and fanned the flames that kept it going. At first, the crowds were just trying to keep the pseudo-independence they had enjoyed during the period of salutary neglect. According to Countryman, “rioting was often defensive” and the people were looking to “restore or protect something good” (1). This was true with the uprisings surrounding the various “Acts.” These defensive movements led to the Revolution. The British pushed the colonists and the colonists pushed back, harder than the British had expected. The movements also scared both American and British leaders. They “placed limits on the power of men who ruled” and “provided a set of signals from people to their rulers” (Countrymen 3). Eventually the uprisings began to focus on British soldiers. Once the colonists were directly acting against their mother country’s military, was their any doubt that a Revolution would transpire? Countryman’s article makes it painfully obvious that he believes in the power of
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This note was uploaded on 10/22/2009 for the course HIST 21 taught by Professor Morrison during the Summer '06 term at UNC.