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The Townshend Acts (1767) Illustration

Road to Revolution for Kids
1767 - The
Townshend Acts

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After the uproar caused by the Stamp Act which led to its repeal, the British Parliament still needed money. Plus they wanted to bring the colonists back into line and make sure they knew that Parliament was in charge. What happened next was collectively known as The Townshend Acts. Back in England, the king's financial minister, Charles Townshend, made some suggestions to Parliament that he felt might benefit the crown.

A series of laws based on Townshend's suggestions were passed by Parliament. These acts did the following:

  • Colonists had to house British troops, and provide food as well as shelter.

  • Taxes were placed on some goods brought into the colonies

  • To enforce the taxes, Parliament issued writs of assistance. These were search warrants British officers could use to enter homes or businesses in search of smuggled goods.

As well, jobs were beginning to be lost by the colonists because British soldiers, who were paid very poorly, had begun to accept jobs on the side at lower wages than colonists had been paid. These were the same British soldiers the colonists had to house and feed.

The Sons of Liberty asked colonial merchants not to sell British goods at all. The Daughters of Liberty encouraged woman to weave their own cloth and to use American made goods.

Boston Massacre
Repeal of the Townshend Acts
(except for the tea tax)