AP US History, DBQ
By the late 1700’s although colonists were not yet greatly unified as a single country, they all began to fight for a single cause: independence from their mother country, Great Britain, they were once so proud to be from, and their natural born rights as Americans, not Englishmen. With the presence of British troops, taxation without representation, and stricter enforcement of laws on the once independent colonies (via salutary neglect) colonists from New Hampshire to Georgia were sick of royal rule. As the political cartoon in the Pennsylvania Gazette (doc A) shows, those from within the colonies were pursuing independence more and more. Essentially Join, or Die was a message to the colonies to group together as a nation- or else. Most had a growing disdain for British rules, and it showed.
More tensions began after the French and Indian war. The British left with little respect for the colonists in terms of willingness and capability to defend their own land and the new territories they had gained. To “fix” the problem Britain sent its own troops to deal with matters in the future, instead of allowing the colonists to rule their own land. The colonists however were pleased with how they fought and throughout all colonies was a sense of pride. They believed they were able to fight their own battles. With war, came debt, and taxes for the colonies. New taxes such as the Tea, Stamp, and Towhsend acts heavily taxed the colonists. They viewed this as an infringement of their natural born rights and rights as a British citizen (although many thought themselves to be Americans) to be taxed without representation. Many protested and Acts were repealed but the right to tax the colonies without representation was still boiling colonists blood. Edmond Burke, Notes for a Speech in Parliament (doc b) laid out that colonists should not be taxed as if they are British towns because they bear little resemblances to one. Colonial society had...