American Revolution: Inept British Colonial Policy III

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: After more than a century of benign neglect by Britain, the colonies and the mother country discovered they viewed the world from two distinct increasingly disconnected perspectives. The colonies were established as a clearly subordinate part of the British economic system which was known as mercantilism. The colonies grew raw materials, goods were transported in both directions in British ships, all of which was designed to benefit the people and economy of England.

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American Revolution: Inept British Colonial Policy II

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: The inability of the London government to effectively exercise control over the colonies was one of the reasons that led to the Revolution. After more than a century of benign neglect by Britain, the colonies and mother country discovered they viewed the world from two distinct increasingly disconnected perspectives. This was compounded by the decidedly amateurish approach London took to governing.

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American Revolution: Inept British Colonial Policy I

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: The crisis that severely altered the relationship between Britain and its thirteen North American colonies was fundamentally rooted in an increasingly divergent perception of control. By the 1700s, though the colonies were theoretically under the direction of Britain, the reality was that all of them were largely independent in the way they conducted their own social, political, economic and religious life. They were, to paraphrase the words of sociologists Beatrice and Sydney Webb, virtually autonomous. Distance was too great and effective governmental communication too deficient to permit a closely held control of colonial affairs. Britons may have thought they played the dominant role in the cross-Atlantic relationship, but that was a snare and a delusion. Americans may have not reached the point where they defined this circumstance as independence, but within 12 years after the end of the French and Indian War in 1763, a powerful plurality of the colonists would embrace independence as a reality, and Britain’s sclerotic response made things worse.

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America’s Revolution: The Bishop’s Palace III

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: In 1760 The Reverend East Apthorp arrived in Massachusetts with newly appointed Governor Francis Bernard. Apthorp became the Anglican pastor in Cambridge. A man hardly out of his twenties, he married into the loyalist Hutchinson family and, thus established, he proceeded to publicly announce support for schemes that were so eccentric and had absolutely no chance of enactment that he brought down on himself universal disdain in and out of the newspapers. He proposed that the Harvard Overseers add Anglicans to their number and that Anglican services be included in the College commencement. Imagine. Harvard. The seat of all Congregational, Calvinist dissent in the Commonwealth.

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America’s Revolution: The Bishop’s Palace II

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: The religious affiliation of most Americans was not inclined toward the Church of England. They were evangelicals or liberals or perhaps not even religious at all and enjoyed in America a rich tradition of religious freedom. Many of their ancestors had migrated to North America to escape what they sensed was hostility to their approach to religion in the government of England and Scotland as administered by the Anglican Church. The structure of hierarchy in that Church aroused little enthusiasm among colonists who were generally unsympathetic to establishments of any type. Such was part of the American DNA.

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America’s Revolution: The Bishop’s Palace I

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: In 1770 Lord North became King George III’s First Minister. He was a gentle soul with a determination to tamp down on colonial disputes. His government quickly repealed all of the Townshend revenue acts, leaving only a tax on tea and the Declaratory Act to remind the colonies that Parliament was determined to retain its right to extract revenues. This ushered in a period which some at the time called a “pause in politics,” with no giant issue animating colonial anger and resistance. That is until there was one. That was the issue of religion.

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American Revolution: Mr. Seldon’s Penny II

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: In the Revolutionary Era, Americans were followers of John Locke. They believed with Locke that their property represented more than just material possessions, rather property symbolized and secured their lives, liberties, estates, and freedom. In all the colonies, property also bestowed on the owners the rights of a political man. In order to vote one had to possess real property, land. And leaders were those who owned lots of land or were engaged in profitable commercial enterprise. They received this idea from the ancient establishment of Parliament as representative and protector of those who owned property.

American Revolution: Mr. Seldon’s Penny I

Lead: In the 1700s the United States broke from England. No colony in history had done that before. This series examines America’s Revolution.

Intro: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts

Content: In the 1760s and 1770s British colonists in North America struggled to justify or even to describe the foundation of their increasing discontent with their relationship with Britain. Eventually a full-blown constitutional argument or justification for liberation would find expression in the writings of Thomas Paine and in Jefferson’s Declaration of Independence, but in the wake of the Stamp Act Crisis of 1765 and 1766 colonial advocates were trying to find the ideas that might give respectability to their determination to protect their property from Parliamentary tax schemes. For colonial theorists, protection of property was not an idle exercise, not some exercise in selfish acquisition. Property for Americans represented the heart and soul of liberty. The very purpose of civil society was the “preservation and regulation of property.