The British believed
that the colonists should have to pay some of the cost of the French
and Indian War. Parliament taxed the colonists. The colonists didn’t
like taxation without representation. The colonists kept having
protests against taxes, leading to the Boston Tea Party. The British
wanted the colonists to pay England back for all the tea that the
colonists destroyed during the Boston Tea Party. Parliament also
wanted more control over the colonies so it passed a series of acts,
called the Coercive Acts, in 1774. These acts were to punish the
colonists and bring them back into submission of the king. They
* The Boston Port Act
(March 31, 1774) – closed the port until the colonists paid
Britain back for the tea they dumped into the harbor.
* Massachusetts Government Act (May 20, 1774) – a town could
only have a meeting if the Governor allowed them to have it.
* Administration of Justice Act (May 20, 1774) – British officials
charged with a crime would be sent to England for their trial.
* The Quartering Act (June 2, 1774) – colonists could be forced
to allow soldiers to use their homes for quarters.
* The Quebec Act (June 22, 1774) – extended the boundaries
The colonies referred
to these acts as the Intolerable Acts.
These Acts had many effects.
The Massachusetts Government Act got rid of elected officials. Almost
all of the government positions were to be appointed by the British
and were under the seal of Great Britain. The Administration of
Justice Act allowed the Governor of Massachusetts to transfer trials
to Great Britain. The Boston Port Act closed the port until damages
for the Boston Tea Party were paid back to Great Britain. This hurt
Boston economically. Other colonies supported them in protest. These
acts made the other colonies feel sorry for Massachusetts. Ordinarily,
the colonies didn’t really work together but now they did.
Boston wanted all the colonies to boycott British goods. Virginia
proposed that the colonies meet to list their objections and decide
what to do. This led to the First Continental Congress in Philadelphia,
in September 1774. The Intolerable Acts were the last straw for
Britain and the colonists, leading to the beginning of the American