Quotes on 1773: Boston Tea Party

"The mistaken policy of the Stamp Act first disturbed this happy situation; but the flame thereby raised was soon extinguished by its repeal, and the old harmony restored, with all its concomitant advantage to our commerce. The subsequent act of another administration, which, not content with an established exclusion of foreign manufactures, began to make our own merchandise dearer to the consumers there, by heavy duties, revived it again; and combinations were entered into throughout the continent to stop trading with Britain till those duties should be repealed. All were accordingly repealed but one, the duty on tea. This was reserved (professedly so) as a standing claim and exercise of the right assumed by Parliament of laying such duties."

Benjamin Franklin
1772
Library Topic

"Patriotism is as much a virtue as justice, and is as necessary for the support of societies as natural affection is for the support of families."

Benjamin Rush
October 20, 1773
Library Topic

"In about three hours from the time we went on board, we had thus broken and thrown overboard every tea chest to be found on the ship, while those in the other ships were disposing of the tea in the same way, at the same time. We were surrounded by the British armed ships, but no attempt was made to resist us...And it was observed at that time that the stillest night ensued that Boston had enjoyed for many months."

George Hewes
American Revolution
The History Place
December 1773
Library Topic

"The following acts of Parliament are infringements and violations of the rights of the colonists; and that the repeal of them is essentially necessary in order to restore harmony between Great Britain and the American colonies, viz.: the three acts passed in the last session of Parliament, for stopping the port up the harbor of Boston, for altering the charter and government of the Massachusetts Bay."

Library Topic

"The inhabitants of that unfortunate city, who but a few months ago were in ease and affluence, have now, no other alternative than to stay and starve, or turn and beg. Endangered by the fire of their friends if they continue within the city, and plundered by the soldiery if they leave it. In their present condition they are prisoners without the hope of redemption, and in general attack for their relief, they would be exposed to the fury of both armies."

Thomas Paine
1776
Library Topic

"We were merry, in an undertone, at the idea of making so large a cup of tea for the fishes."

Joshua Wyeth
Boston Tea Party Historical Society
December 1826
Library Topic

"[There emerged a] kind of unformed nationalism...growing up with more and more men in more and more colonies speaking and writing of an American cause that they largely defined in terms of protecting American liberties against British tyranny."

Richard C. Simmons
W.W. Norton & Co.
1976
Library Topic
Library Topic

More About This Topic...

Click thumbnails below to view links

Quote Page

Commentary or Blog Post

Hall reports on Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke's testimony before the House Budget Committee on June 3, 2009. Bernanke believes that the higher spending is necessary in the short term to prevent further deterioration of the economy, but could lead to significant problems down the road.

"Because Bernanke appeared before the House Budget Committee, much...

ITO's Devin Foley responds to a CNN reporter who attempts to make a mockery of a dad at Chicago tea party. Here's an excerpt:

"In watching the video, two things are blatantly obvious:  1) The CNN reporter is biased and 2) She has never taken a finance class in her life. She also...

"President Obama's ambitious plans to cut middle-class taxes, overhaul health care and expand access to college would require massive borrowing over the next decade, leaving the nation mired far deeper in debt than the White House previously estimated, congressional budget analysts said yesterday.

In the first independent analysis of Obama's budget proposal, the nonpartisan...

The Boston Tea Party remains one of the few events leading up to the American Revolutionary War which so truly defines, for the average American citizen, the nature of the colonies' severance from England. Aside from the war itself, the Tea Party, in many respects, embodies this resistance movement.

British attempts to colonize the newly discovered continent of North America began with...

On the eve of the April 15, 2009 tea party protests, ITO's Foley asks the important question, "What is the purpose of a protest rally?" He traces some of the history of civil disobedience in the United States, details the immense debt burden the United States government has taken on...

"New Research by Mercatus Center Senior Research Fellow Veronique de Rugy examines the cost of the debt in another way. Using the Congressional Budget Office's long-term budget projections, this chart compares the relative contributions of general, Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security and net interest spending. While general spending and Social Security spending are projected to remain...

In this article Thorndike contends that the Tea Party was not a protest against high taxes, but rather a response to a "corporate bailout" by the British government of the East India Company, that it was a "carefully managed (if not entirely scripted) episode of civil disobedience," and that the Party did not garner much of a following until decades after the event...

This article from EyeWitness to History examines both the English's imperial motives for taxation as well as the understandable outrage from the beleaguered colonies.  It also offers a brief account from George Hewes, one of those present at the harbor on the infamous evening of December 16, 1773.

In this short blog post, Lindsey worries that the conservative movement has lost its intellectual grist is now living on "intellectual junk food." He also worries that the Tea Party movement, and some associating with it, will taint the liberty movement. He argues that:

...

De Rugy discusses the affect of interest payments on the national debt. "Starting in 2012, the cost of the debt as a percentage of GDP will explode from a mere 1.8 percent of GDP to more than 30 percent of GDP in 2082."

Stoll, author of Samuel Adams: A Life, recognizes, that the discontent over the spending and taxation plans is legitimate, but questions holding protests in the name of tea parties.

"The skeptical...

Chart or Graph

The graph above was produced by the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank. It measures the growth of the monetary base between February 15, 1984 and September 21, 2011. It shows a massive expansion of the monetary base since the 2008 financial crisis.

This chart shows the change that will be taking place in government as 60% of federal employees are eligible for retirement through 2016.

"Using the Congressional Budget Office's long-term budget projections, this chart compares the relative contributions of general, Medicare and Medicaid and Social Security and net interest spending."

According to The Washington Post, the CBO's latest analysis projects huge deficits, forcing the U.S. to borrow unprecedented amounts of money.

"Notice that under either of CBO's scenarios, the net interest payments, or the costs of the debt, rival the cost of two of our nation's most expensive social programs."

"Total public debt outstanding on June 9, 2009 divided by the United States population on June 11, 2009 means that at the time this piece is written that on a per capita basis each American owes $37,148.95."

Analysis Report White Paper

This paper discusses Federal retirement statistics in order to gain a better understanding of the future makeup of the Federal workforce. A significant number of employees are eligible or will become eligible to retire in the near future, making a deeper analysis of the retirement of Federal civilians more timely and meaningful.

Were the individuals involved in the Boston Tea Party activists? Extremists? Terrorists? Todd Alan Kreamer gives his opinion and puts their actions into 21st century perspective.

White presents a very in-depth analysis of the events leading up to the $700 billion bailout including what Treasury Secretary Paulson and Federal Reserve Chairman Benanke were requesting, how the citizens reacted, and the actions taken by Congress.

Video/Podcast/Media

"While politicians blame each other for the House's rejection of the $700 billion bailout bill, some economists warn that if the bill had passed, it would have signaled the end of the 'free market' structure in the United States."

"CNBC's Rick Santelli called for a 'Chicago Tea Party' Thursday, leading the charge for calls to revolt against the Obama Administration's mortgage bailout plan....

The clip has gone viral on the Internet, bringing with it loads of opinions, both pro and con."

While there was talk of Tea Parties prior to Santelli's famous "rant," in many ways he gave legitimacy to modern day Tea Parties and got the movement rolling forward. Some charged that Santelli's rant was a staged "green top."

Belinkie blends Batman with the 2008 $700 billion bailout. The video makes quite a statement.

Primary Document

Other cities soon follow the Bostonians actions, refusing to allow ships to anchor in their ports. Just over two weeks after the Tea Party had taken place, it had ignited similar actions across the colonies.

New York, Philadelphia, Charleston, and Boston (all port cities) had the possibility of receiving the tea shipments. This article was a cry for Boston, the eventual last option for East India Company, to stand strongly against the Tea Act.

This article features the initial reaction to the Tea Act in the colonies. The British had hoped that the establishment of lower tea prices would mask the fact that the tea tax, which had begun with the Townshend Acts, remained in place. Unfortunately for England, this did not escape the eyes of the perturbed colonists.

"The first published account of the Boston Tea Party by a participant was recorded from the words of Joshua Wyeth. He was just sixteen when he joined other patriots in boarding the tea ships in Boston Harbor. Mr. Wyeth told his story to a journalist in Cincinnati where he lived during his later years. The account was published in 1826, 53 years after the event has occurred."

"The tea destroyed was contained in three ships, lying near each other at what was called at that time Griffin's wharf, and were surrounded by armed ships of war, the commanders of which had publicly declared that if the rebels, as they were pleased to style the Bostonians, should not withdraw their opposition to the landing of the tea before a certain day, the 17th day of December, 1773, they...

"Throughout November, the Boston's patriots have been meeting, writing, and agitating about the tea. On November 28, 1773, the Dartmouth enters Boston Harbor carrying 114 chests of the East India import. Matters are at an impasse: if returned to England, the tea and the vessel carrying it may be confiscated; if the Townshend duty is not paid by 17 December, the customs collector can...

As news breaks of the Tea Party, as it quickly came to be known, colonists celebrate their temporary victory and debate further action.

Thomas Paine's famous and radical 1776 pamphlet made a bold case for American Independence from Britain, at a time when the notion of Independence was still contested among the colonists.

"Chairman Spratt, Ranking Member Ryan, and other members of the Committee, I am pleased to have this opportunity to offer my views on current economic and financial conditions and on issues pertaining to the federal budget."

As part of the First Continental Congress, the Declaration of Colonial Rights was adopted as a result of the passage of the Coercive Acts by Parliament in 1774. It is often argued that this was a direct precursor and influence of the Declaration of Independence.

Predominantly written by Thomas Jefferson, the Declaration of Independence formally and eloquently justified the independence of the United States from British monarch King George III.

The Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008 was not the first stimulus bill passed in 2008, but it certainly was the largest at over $700 billion.

Dickinson's famous series of letters demonstrate the growing unrest within the colonies over the increasing British imperial control. This letter focuses on the Townshend Acts, foreshadowing the more vehement protests over subsequent Parliamentary acts in the coming years.

Philadelphia reacts to the passage of the Tea Act by refusing tea to be shipped to its ports. The author likens this new act to the infamous Stamp Act of 1765, complaining that this, too, is simply a tax for revenue.

The colonists make it quite clear that they will not tolerate the presence of East India Company's ships in their port.

"As health care costs continue to grow faster than the economy and the baby-boom generation nears eligibility for Social Security and Medicare, the United States faces inevitable decisions about the fundamentals of its spending policies and its means of financing those policies. This Congressional Budget Office report looks at a range of possible paths for federal spending and...

Jenyns, a commissioner of the board of trade in England, depicts the imperial standpoint over the question of taxation of the colonies. His objections to the colonial protest are valuable because they bring to light the simplistic view many Englishman held on the matter. Very few sympathized with the colonial viewpoint.

Perhaps the most controversial of the Coercive Acts (also known as the Intolerable Acts) of 1774, this was part of England's harsh reaction to the Boston Tea Party. Several of these acts specifically targeted MA in an attempt to set an example for the rest of the colonies.

Otis provides a unique colonial outlook as he attempts to reconcile the dilemma of colonial subordinance, while also maintaining some power through representation. He lays out an original argument against taxation without representation and provides a good background to the momentous events that would come ten years after this publication.

This piece is contained in the Boston Pamphlet as part of the reaction against British attempts to strengthen their stronghold on the colonies. Moreover, it was a response to the slew of acts England passed during the 1760s and would remain a symbol to the colonists who participated in the Boston Tea Party.

Ordering a tax stamp on many printed materials in the colonies in order to help fund the Seven Years' War, this act was the first that resulted in significant colonial objection. Although it was repealed just a year later, it alerted the colonists to England's taxation objectives.

This act precipitated further rebellious action in the colonies, which already held strong grievances toward Britain. It eliminated the transfer of the tea through Britain and instead directly taxed the colonies (which it originally attempted to hide from the colonies) to boost the struggling East India Company. Furthermore, it strengthened the monopoly of the East India Company at the expense...

The most relevant aspect of these acts dealt with the trade and taxation of tea. The British East India Company had maintained a monopoly on tea trade for some time. But with such high prices, cheaper smuggled tea became popular for many colonial people, thereby suffocating East India business. To overcome these economic strains, Parliament decided to tax the colonists on tea, again raising...

Books

Link

Related Content