THE CAUSES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION • For much of the 18th century, the western frontier of British No. America was the flashpoint of imperial rivalries. • The Ohio Valley was caught in a complex struggle for power involving the French, British, and rival Indian communities, and settlers and land companies pursuing their own interests.
THE CAUSES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION • Here by mid-century resided numerous Indians – Shawnee and Delaware who had been pushed out of PA., by white settlement; Cherokee and Chickasaw from the southern colonies who looked to the region for new hunting grounds; Iroquois seeking to exert control over the region’s fur trade.
THE CAUSES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION • The Iroquois were masters of balance-of-power diplomacy. • Their sovereignty in the Ohio Valley was accepted by the British, but it was challenged by the French and their Indian allies.
THE CAUSES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION • On this “middle ground” between European empires and Indian sovereignty, villages sprang up where members of numerous tribes lived together side by side, along with European traders and the occasional missionary. • The Indians recognized that the imperial rivalry of Britain and France posed both threat and opportunity. • They sought (with some success) to play the European powers off one another and to control the lucrative commerce with whites.
THE CAUSES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION • 1750: Few white settlers inhabited the Ohio Valley. • But settlers were moving into the region. • 1749: The govt., of VA., awarded an immense land grant – half a million acres – to the Ohio Company whose members included the colony’s royal governor Roger Dinwiddie, and the cream of VA., society – including George Washington.
THE CAUSES OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION • The land grant threatened the region’s Indians as well as PA’s, land speculators, who had claims in the area. • It sparked the French to bolster their presence in the region. • It was the Ohio Company’s demand for recognition of its land claims that inaugurated the French and Indian War (Seven Years War),
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • The French and Indian War was the first of a century’s wars to begin in the colonies and the first to result in a decisive victory for one combatant. • It permanently altered the balance of power.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • What became a worldwide struggle for imperial domination, which eventually spread to Europe, West Africa and Asia, began in 1754 with British efforts to dislodge the French from forts they had constructed in western PA.
THE CAUSES OF THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • 1753: VA., Gov. Roger Dinwiddie dispatched 21 year old George Washington on an unsuccessful mission to persuade the French to abandon a fort they were building on lands claimed by the Ohio Company. • 1754: GW returned to the area with 2 companies of soldiers. He hastily constructed Fort Necessity.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • After an ill-considered attempt to defend the fort against a larger French and Indian force, resulting in the loss of 1/3 of his men. GW was forced to surrender. • Soon afterwards, an expedition led by Gen. Edward Braddock against Fort Duquesne was ambushed leaving Braddock and 2/3 of his 3,000 soldiers dead or wounded. • For two years, the war went badly for the British.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • 1757: The turning point for the British when William Pitt was appointed Prime Minister. He took over the management of the war effort. • He raised large sums of money and poured men and naval forces into the war. • He instituted a colonial requisition system.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • 1759: Britain, with colonial and Indian forces, captured pivotal French outposts – Fort Duquesne, Ticonderoga, and Louisbourg. • 1760: Montreal, the last outpost of New France, surrendered – Game, set, and match.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • 1763: The Treaty of Paris was signed. • FR., ceded Canada to GB., receiving in return the sugar islands of Guadeloupe and Martinique. • Spain ceded FL. To GB., in exchange for Cuba, and acquired from FR., the vast Louisiana colony.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • France’s 200-year old No. American empire had come to an end. • With the exception of two tiny islands retained by FR., off the coast of Newfoundland, the entire continent, east of the Mississippi River, was now in British hands.
PONTIAC’S REBELLION • The departure of the French in the aftermath of the French and Indian War eliminated the balance-of-power diplomacy that had enabled nations like the Iroquois to maintain a significant degree of autonomy. • The Treaty of Paris (1763) left the Indians more dependent than ever on the British.
PONTIAC’S REBELLION • The end of the French and Indian War ushered in a period of confusion over land claims, control of the fur trade, and tribal relations in general. • To Indians, it was clear that continued expansion of the British colonies posed a dire threat. • 1763: In wake of the French defeat, Indians of the Ohio Valley and Great Lakes launched a revolt against the British. • Although known as Pontiac’s Rebellion, an Ottawa leader, the rebellion owes at least as much to teachings of Neolin, a Delaware religious prophet.
PONTIAC’S REBELLION • During a religious vision, the Master of Life, instructed Neolin that his people must reject European technology, free themselves from commercial ties with whites and dependence on alcohol, clothe themselves in the garb of their ancestors, and drive the British from the territory. • All Indians, he preached, were a single people and only through cooperation could they regain their independence.
THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • 1763: Ottawas, Hurons, and other Indians besieged Detroit, then a major British military outpost.
PONTIAC’S REBELLION • They seized nine other forts, and killed hundreds of white settlers who had intruded onto Indian lands. • British forces soon launched a counterattack and over the next few years the Indian nations one by one made peace.
PONTIAC’S REBELLION • The uprising inspired the British govt., to issue the Proclamation of 1763. • This prohibited further colonial settlement west of the Appalachian Mts. • These lands were reserved exclusively for Indians.
PONTIAC’S REBELLION • The British aim was less to protect the Indians than to stabilize the situation on the colonial frontier. • But the Proclamation enraged both settlers and speculators hoping to take advantage of the French to consolidate their own claims to western lands.
THE COLONIES AND THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • The colonies emerged from the war with a heightened sense of collective identity. • Before the war, the colonies had been largely isolated from each other. • Outside of N.E., more Americans probably traveled to England than from one colony to another. • While possessing a collective identity, the colonies were by no means united.
THE COLONIES AND THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • 1751: Gov. George Clinton of NY called for a general conference on Indian relations. • Only three colonies bothered to send delegates. • 1754: The Albany Congress convened.
THE COLONIES AND THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • The Albany Congress adopted the Albany Plan of Union written by Benjamin Franklin. • The Plan envisioned the creation of a Grand Council composed of delegates from each colony, with the power to levy taxes and deal with Indian relations and the common defense.
THE COLONIES AND THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • Rejected by the colonial assemblies, whose powers under the Plan would be curtailed. • The Plan was never sent to London for approval.
THE COLONIES AND THE FRENCH AND INDIAN WAR • The war created greater bonds between the colonies. • But it also strengthened colonists’ pride in being members of the British Empire. • But soon, the colonists would come to believe that membership in the empire jeopardized their liberty. • When they did, they set out on a road that led to independence.
THE MERCANTILIST SYSTEM • 1. An economic system whose central tenant is that the colonies existed for the benefit of the Mother Country. • 2. Colonies should add to the Empire’s wealth, prosperity, and self-sufficiency. • 3. Colonies ensure British naval supremacy by providing ships, ships’ stores, sailors and trade.
THE MERCANTILIST SYSTEM • 4. Colonies provide raw materials – tobacco, indigo, lumber, fish, etc. • 5. Colonies provide a large consumer market for British goods. • To enforce this system, Parliament passed a series of NAVIGATION ACTS.
THE NAVIGATION LAWS • Basic provisions: Restricted commerce to and from the colonies to English or American ships. • Certain “enumerated articles” like tobacco could not be shipped to any other foreign market except England, despite higher prices in other markets. • All European goods going to America had to go through England first. • The Molasses Act of 1733: most important Act – sought to curtail trade between N.E., and the French Caribbean by imposing a tax on French produced molasses used to make rum in colonial distilleries.
THE MERCANTILIST SYSTEM • POSITIVE RESULTS OF SYSTEM: • 1. Navigation Laws did not adversely impact the colonial economy. • 2. Colonials had rights of Englishmen and opportunities for self-government (salutary neglect). • 3. Colonies had British military protection free of charge. • 4. Colonies greatly profited from mfg. and trading. • 5. The Colonies enjoyed the highest standard of living in the world.
THE MERCANTILIST SYSTEM • NEGATIVE IMPACT OF SYSTEM: • 1. Colonial mfg. hindered by British policies. • 2. Southern colonies suffered as export prices dropped due to “enumeration.” • 3. New England resented favorable British policies toward Southern colonies. • 4. Writs of Assistance crisis
WRITS OF ASSISTANCE CRISIS • First sign of trouble between England and the colonies. • Writs were search warrants by British customs officers. • Aim was to reduce colonial smuggling.
WRITS OF ASSISTANCE CRISIS • 1761: James Otis, Jr., of MA., representing shippers, demanded Parliament repeal the writs. • Parliament refused but Otis’ efforts gained press in the colonies. • Later, Otis would write the words “no taxation without representation.”
THE IMPERIAL REORGANIZATION OF 1763-1764 • Having treated the colonies as allies during the French and Indian War, GB reverted in the mid-1760s to seeing them as subordinates whose main role was to enrich the mother country. • During this period the govt., in London concerned itself with the colonies in unprecedented ways, hoping to make British rule more efficient and systematic and to raise funds to help pay for the war and to finance the empire.
THE IMPERIAL REORGANIZATION OF 1763-1764 • The British felt that the colonies should be grateful to the empire. • To fight the French and Indian War, GB., had borrowed from banks and individual investors over 150 million pounds – the equivalent of tens of trillions of dollars in today’s money. • The tax burden in GB had reached unprecedented heights.
THE IMPERIAL REORGANIZATION OF 1763-1764 • The govt., in London was virtually banckrupt after the French and Indian War. • It only seemed reasonable that the colonies should help pay down the national debt, foot the bill for continued British protection, and stop cheating the Treasury by violating the Navigation Acts. • This thinking led to Parliament levying taxes on the colonies and the end of salutary neglect.
VIRTUAL REPRESENTATION v. DIRECT REPRESENTATION • Nearly all Britons believed that Parliament represented the entire empire and had a right to legislate it. • Millions of Britons had no representation in Parliament.
VIRTUAL REPRESENTATION v. DIRECT REPRESENTATION • But according to the theory of virtual representation each member of Parliament represented the entire empire not just his district. • The interests of all who lived under the British Crown were supposedly taken into account.
VIRTUAL REPRESENTATION v. DIRECT REPRESENTATION • When the colonies began to insist that because they were unrepresented in Parliament, the British govt., could not tax them, they won very little support from the mother country. • The colonies insisted on direct representation – representatives from the colonies holding seats in Parliament. • But the colonies would never have enough representatives in Parliament to stop the new direction in British policy.
THE IMPERIAL REORGANIZATION OF 1763-1764 • 1763: King George III ascended to the throne. • He would be no friend to the colonies. • It took the colonies a very long time to realize this. • 1763: Proclamation of 1763.
THE IMPERIAL REORGANIZATION OF 1763-1764 • The first attempt by Parliament to get the colonies to pay their fair share for the rights and privileges that came with being a member of the British Empire was the SUGAR ACT OF 1764
The Act was introduced by Prime Minister George Grenville and passed by Parliament. It reduced the existing tax on molasses from 6 pence to 3 pence per gallon. It established a new machinery to end colonial smuggling. It strengthened the admiralty courts where accused smugglers could be judged with a the benefit of a jury trial. The colonists saw the measure not as a welcome reduction in taxes but as an attempt to get them to pay a tax they would have otherwise evaded. The colonies also saw the strengthening of the admiralty courts as an attempt by Parliament to restrict the rights they deserved as Englishmen. THE SUGAR ACT OF 1764
THE REVENUE ACT AND CURRENCY ACT OF 1764 • Parliament passed two more measures in an attempt to raise revenue from the colonies: • THE REVENUE ACT: Placed goods such as wool and hides, which had previously been traded freely with Holland and England, on the enumerated list, meaning they had to be shipped to England first. • THE CURRENCY ACT: Reaffirmed the earlier ban on colonial assemblies issuing paper as “legal tender” that is money that individuals are required to accept in payment of debts,