What Increased Tension Between The Colonists And The British Government In 1774?
It was the imposition of the 5 Coercive Acts or the Intolerable Acts on the 13 North American colonies, which increased the tension between the colonists and the British government in 1774.
But don’t you want to know how it worked to increase tension between these two sides?
Well, in early 1774, the Parliament of Great Britain started passing 5 laws to punish the 13 colonies’ colonists for the Boston tea party; especially, they targeted the people of Boston, Massachusetts province.
Colonists considered those acts highly vengeful to their life and security.
In the Boston Tea Party not all the people of the colonies were involved, but even after knowing all these, the parliament was planning to punish all the people of the 13 colonies.
Hence, colonists named them ‘Intolerable Acts’ (though, for the Parliament, those were Coercive Acts).
In the end, these acts led the 13 colonies to the Revolutionary War of independence.
Actions of The British Government Via The Laws Were Something Like This
1. Boston Port Act
Through the Boston Port Act, the English Parliament intended to close all the trades through the Boston Harbor.
They decided to impose this restriction until colonists pay compensation to East India Company for the losses during the tea party incident.
The British also demanded colonists say sorry to the British King George III.
Colonists considered it an act of revenge, even though, they were not involved during the incident.
[Interesting Fact: Did You Know? Boston Tea Party Was Executed By Samuel Adams’ Led Sons of Liberty. This Was A Patriotic Organization; Around 116 Members of Sons of Liberty Fulfilled The Tea Party On 16th December 1773]
2. Massachusetts Government Act
Through the Massachusetts Government Act, the British Parliament significantly changed the way the province was governed before.
The law completely neutralized the significance of the Massachusetts Charter (1691).
Under this law, the role of local leaders was significantly reduced from their administrative arrangements. But at the same time, royally appointed governors and other officials became more and more powerful.
It gave wide-ranging power to the royally appointed Governor that he could even dissolve Massachusetts’ provincial assembly at any time.
[Interesting Fact: Did You Know? In October 1774, Royal Governor Thomas Gage Dissolved The Provincial Assembly Without Big Reason. In Respond, Colonists’ Leaders Formed An Alternative Government To Control Everything Outside of Boston]
3. Administration of Justice Act
Administration of Justice Act was infamous as the ‘Murder Act’.
The act indirectly encouraged English officials to commit crimes in the colonies and run away to any other part of the British Empire.
The law highly threatened the colonists.
Patriots like George Washington named it the ‘Murder Act’ or ‘Murdering Act’.
[Interesting Fact: Did You Know? Administration of Justice Act Mainly Passed To Control The Rebellion In The 13 Colonies. The Act Primarily Targeted Massachusetts Province Because After The Boston Tea Party, It Was Transformed Into The Center of Growing Unrest]
4. Quebec Act
Quebec Act intended to increase Canada’s Quebec Province’s land area towards the 13 colonies’ midwest.
Also, it intended to create religious distances between Protestants and Christian Catholics.
5. Quartering Act
The Quartering Act of 1774 was the 2nd version of 1765’s Quartering Act.
Through this act, colonists would have to allow their private homes for sheltering British soldiers during times of war and peace.
Even the act allowed English soldiers to forcefully occupy colonists’ homes.
So, these were the main actions performed by the British Parliament in 1774, which increased their tension against the colonists.
And I think we all know what happened after that.