Back to Boston 1773: The British Townshend Scheme

Part 4: of an 18-part series

•     Charles Townshend, chancellor of the exchequer, father of the Townshend Acts, 1767

Implementing The Declaratory Act of 1766: “that Parliament had the right to bind the colonies in all cases whatsoever.”

•     “These acts, in brief, imposed duties on glass, paper, painters’ colors, and tea; established a board of customs at Boston to collect the revenue throughout America; and legalized writs of assistance. The preamble of the act imposing duties stated that they were laid for raising a revenue to provide for the support of civil government in the provinces, and for their general defence. It was designed that the governors, judges, and attorneys should be rendered independent of the local assemblies. The extent to which parliament interfered with these bodies was seen in the law suspending the New York assembly from the exercise of the powers of legislation until it should comply with the act requiring it to provide quarters for British troops.” (Richard Frothingham)

•    “The ministry seemed bent on giving full force to the Declaratory Act, and governing the colonies in all cases whatever; and their arbitrary practices grated harshly on a people habituated to the ways of freedom.” 

To be continued…