How Did The Colonists React To The Quartering Act?
The American colonists strongly opposed the quartering act.
Because through the act, they had to give shelter to the British troops at their private homes; most importantly, even after against their will.
|Answer In Short: Keeping in mind the mood of the colonists, some leaders like Benjamin Franklin suggested to the English troops to find shelter in public homes in suburbs rather than interfering with colonists’ private life.|
According to the colonists, providing support to the troops during wartime was a completely different matter; but in peacetime, they believed it was horrible.
Even, leveraging the power of this act, sometimes British troops forcefully occupied the private homes of the colonists.
This was the most harassing thing for them. Either way, colonists feared a lot about that.
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For the British government 1765 and 1774’s quartering acts were coercive.
But colonists seemed it differently; for colonists, this was so much bad and against their civil rights.
On the other hand, the British Parliament already created the Mutiny act in the years 1723, 1754, and 1756.
These laws prohibited the British troops from quartering at private homes against citizen’s will.
But the British army kept ignoring those laws.
Due to the violation of the laws by the British soldiers, the colonists were forced to think that their liberty was being completely destroyed.
To get rid out of the problem, some of the colonist’s leaders like Benjamin Franklin also showed the British soldiers another good way.
They showed to them that they could quarter at public houses in the suburbs rather than interfering in colonists’ private life.
So, this was how did the colonists react to the quartering act.
Why Was The Quartering Act Passed?
The story of the Quartering Act began during the period of the Seven Years’ War (or the French & Indian War).
At that time, it was getting difficult to find shelter for soldiers while marching from one place to another.
So, then the Commander-In-Chief of the British army, General Thomas Gage requested British Parliament to take some immediate initiative over the issue.
To solve this problem, some assemblies like the New York assembly passed acts.
However, their acts expired earlier in January 1764.
But the British government found many benefits of this system, because of which in 1765, they brought a completely new act as the ‘Quartering Act’.
Colonists and local leaders were unhappy with this new law because the war was over long ago and France already defeated; so, keeping soldiers there was an unnecessary decision by the British Parliament.