Stamp Act Essay

The Stamp Act was a very important act to the British because it said that the British had rights to tax the colonists over everything they do. The stamp act is an act that the British enforced on the colonists to make them pay taxes on what they send out and on some activities they participated in. This act required all the colonists to place tax stamps on newspapers, letters, and other documents. The colonists disliked this act because they were paying double taxes, their taxes and the British taxes. The stamp act was passed by the Parliament on March 22, 1765 without debate and it became effective November 1, 1765.

All the taxes had to be paid by British currency not the colonial paper money. The act was passed to raise about six-hundred-thousand dollars a year to pay for the British troops living in the colonies. The money collected by the Stamp Act was to be used to help pay the costs of defending and protecting the American frontier near the Appalachian Mountains (ten thousand troops were to be stationed on the American frontier for this purpose. ) The colonists had no interest in the Parliament, except to make the stamp act ineffective. Therefore, the stamp act was unconstitutional.

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The Stamp Act ha d some disadvantages. All of the disadvantages were based on the colonists, all the advantages were based for the British. The actual cost of the Stamp Act was relatively small. What made the law so offensive to the colonists was not so much its immediate cost but the standard it seemed to set. In the past, taxes and duties on colonial trade had always been viewed as measures to regulate commerce, not to raise money. The Stamp Act, however, was viewed as a direct attempt by England to raise money in the colonies without the approval of the colonial legislatures.

If this new tax were allowed to pass without resistance, the colonists reasoned, the door would be open for far more troublesome taxation in the future. The colonists who did not follow the stamp act were tried immediately without juries in admiralty courts. The Parliament reasoned that since the English had paid a similar tax for almost a century, the colonists had no reason to object. Soon the colonists realized that if the British had the power to tax, then British also had the power to destroy them by depriving them of property.

They felt that if a person’s property was not protected, then a person’s liberty was also at stake. George Grenville aimed at helping the British financially from the war. He then accomplished his goal by embedding the Stamp Act and the Sugar Act in the colonies. Grenville also embedded something much more into the hearts and minds of the colonists; the desire to separate from England. When George Grenville taxed the colonies all he was think of what would benefit the England and how to get out of the hole they were in after the war.

What he did not realize was that he was causing more damage by taxing the colonies which was pushing them away. If Grenville had thought more about his strategy on how to help England he might have seen that the colonies and the new land would be more of a benefit to the country instead of using them for money. If Grenville had helped the colonies grow and not taxed them England may be a bigger country in present day. Let us say he didn’t tax them; the colonies may not have felt the need to fight for their freedom from England.

This would cause England to be a much bigger and strong country today. The United States may have never come to be and the Revolutionary War might never have happened saving England even more money in the long run. So if Grenville had stepped back and looked at the big picture and future he may have saved the country more and turned England into what the United States of America is today. It might have been the country that controlled a majority of the world. The Stamp Act was not the only tax put on the colonies, there were numerous amounts of acts of tax put on the colonists.


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