Assertion: The American colonists were justified in waging war against Britain. Document 1



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CAUSES OF THE REVOLUTION DBQ – Assertion Before Evidence

Provide specific, accurate, relevant information to support or deny the following assertion.
As you read, determine through APPARTS & Yes/But analysis, if the doc affirms or denies the assertion
Assertion: The American colonists were justified in waging war against Britain.

Document 1:

The Stamp Act and the other imperial measures to raise revenues in America appeared very different when viewed from the eastern side of the Atlantic. In 1766, Thomas Whately, a British treasury official and aide to Prime Minister George Grenville, wrote Considerations on the Trade and Finances of This Kingdom, excerpted below, to explain why both justice and necessity required the new imperial taxes and trade regulations after the end of the French and Indian War in 1763.


“…Of all the Measures which were pursued for the Benefit of Trade, those were by far the most important which respected the Colonies, who have of late been the Darling Object of the Mother Country's Care: We are not yet recovered from a War undertaken solely for their Protection: Every Object for which it was begun, is accomplished… but whatever may be the Value of the Acquisitions in America, the immediate Benefit of them is to the Colonies; and this Country [Britain] feels it only in their Prosperity…

Were there no other Ground to require a Revenue from the Colonies…Add to these the Advantages obtained for them by the Peace; add the Debt incurred by [Britain in] a War undertaken in their Defense only; the Distress thereby brought upon the [British] Finances, upon the Credit both publick and private, upon the Trade, and upon the people of this Country and yet no more was desired than that they should contribute to the Preservation of the Advantages they have received, and take upon themselves a small Share of the [military] Establishment necessary for their own Protection: Upon these Principles several new Taxes were laid upon the Colonies: Many were indeed…

But it was never intended to impose on them any Share of the National Debt…the Legislature [Parliament] only required of them to contribute to the Support of those Establishments, which are equally interesting to all the Subjects of Great Britain.The Charge of the Navy, Army, and Ordinance, of Africa and of America, is about £3,000,000 per ann(ually)… they are as important to the Colonies as to the Mother Country; as necessary to their Protection, as conducive to their Welfare, as to our own: If all share the Benefit, they should also share the [Burden].


Document 2:

These excerpts are from Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania by John Dickinson. Dickinson was a Pennsylvania political leader who served in the Stamp Act Congress of 1765. Later, he served in the Continental Congress. He was against breaking free from Great Britain, therefore refused to vote on and sign the Declaration of Independence. He was appointed by president of Delaware as a Brigadier-General in the Continental Army and later still, served as a member in the Constitutional Convention. In the following statement, Dickinson condemned some of the new taxes being imposed by Parliament.


There is another late act of parliament, which appears to me to be unconstitutional, and ... destructive to the liberty of these colonies....

The parliament unquestionably possesses a legal authority to regulate the trade of Great Britain, and all her colonies. I have looked over every statute [law] relating to these colonies, from their first settlement to this time; and I find every one of them founded on this principle, till the Stamp Act administration.... All before, are calculated to regulate trade.... The raising of revenue ... was never intended.... Never did the British parliament, [until the passage of the Stamp Act] think of imposing duties in America for the purpose of raising revenue.

[The Townshend Acts claim the authority] to impose duties on these colonies, not for the regulation of trade ... but for the single purpose of levying money upon us.





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