Boston Tea Party: Tea Anyone?
During the Revolutionary War, colonists were getting furiously tired of the tax acts. In protest of the latest Tea Act of 1773 where the British East India Company was granted a monopoly on selling tea in the American colonies, American patriots decided to stage a protest on December 16, 1773 dressed as Mohawk Indians per Making America, A History of the United States by Berkin, Carol, et al. (113).
Some sixty men reported to be members of the Sons of Liberty boarded the ships and dumped 342 chests of tea, worth almost ??10,000 into the waters of the Boston harbor (113). In 10 Things You May Not Know About the Boston Tea Party, Christopher Klein reveals what most people do not know is the revolt was not named the Boston Tea Party until a half century later, also all the men who participated in the event have never been fully disclosed, there was a second Boston Tea Party in March 1774 as well as subsequent tea parties and the financial lost at the end of the protests mounted close to one million dollars for the Boston events. The Boston Tea Party did not actually get the official name until 57 years later.
When the protests were actually carried out, the protests were referred to as the destruction of the tea. The first newspaper to reference the Boston Tea Party was published in 1826. Two books that were written in the 1830s named A Retrospect of the Tea-Party and Traits of the Tea Party sealed the Boston Tea Party name for the revolt. (Klein; par. 6) When the Mohawk Indians boarded the ships in 1773, their disguises were not well planned. The majority knew the Indians were not Indians. Most were recognized by their supporters (Berkin, Carol, et al. 112). Decades later, only some of the identities of the protesters have been divulged. In total, only 116 people are documented to have participated in the Boston Tea Party event (Boston Tea Party Ships & Museum). A good number of the rebels left the Boston area in fear of facing charges for their crime. It is the possibility that some of these men also participated in the other tea parties in 1774.
In March 1774, another Boston Tea party happened. This time 60 disguised men boarded the Fortune in March 1774 (Klein; par. 7). Subsequently, they dumped only 30 chests of tea overboard. The event resulted in fewer monies but the feelings of disgruntlement raged on. The Tea Act spread down the cost of the Americas. New York, Annapolis and Charleston, South Carolina, patriots dumped tea off ships or burned it in protest (Klein; par. 8). In total, 92,000 pounds of tea, roughly 18.5 million teabags, costing an estimated $1 million dollars in today’s world (Klein; par. 9) was dumped into the Boston harbor.
With the other tea parties that happened after the tea parties in Boston, the amount of the rebellion was very costly for the British East India Company. A total of thirteen colonies came together to fight for independence and to dispute the series of taxes that were imposed on American colonists. The Boston activists who protested the tea acts were angry at Britain for imposing taxation without representation, (History.com Editors; par. 1) According to History.com, this was the first major act of defiance to British rule over the colonists. As a result, the rebellion was called the the destruction of the tea until 1826, only 116 men were revealed to have been participants of the Boston Tea Party, there was a second Boston Tea Party in March 1774 as well as subsequent tea parties and the British East India Company lost over one million dollars by the time the tea parties ended.
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