Acts of Charles Townshend 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 1767 the British Parliament passed what became known as the Townshend Acts, named for Charles Townshend, Chancellor of the Exchequer, a member of the government tentatively led by William Pitt. Pitt had a physical collapse and for two years his leadership was incapacitated. His absence left a power vacuum into which Townshend stepped. The son of a minor aristocrat, he had a troubled youth under his overbearing father and emerged a troubled adult, a brilliant orator in Parliamentary debate, but erratic and domineering in his behavior.

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Acts of Charles Townshend 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: George Mason, Virginia planter, politician and future delegate to the U.S. Constitutional Convention in 1787, and widely considered to be the father of the Bill of Rights, was an acute observer of the looming struggle between the American colonies and Great Britain. After the repeal of Stamp Tax, Mason reflected that the attitude of many Britons, particularly those in Parliament who passed and then repealed the tax, was not unlike that of an exasperated parent dealing with an errant child. With icy sarcasm seeming to drip from his pen he wrote of the British attitude, “.,…do what your Papa and Mama bid you and Hasten to return them your most grateful Acknowledgements for condescending to let you keep what is your own; and then all your Acquaintance will love you, and praise you, and give you pretty things;…but if you are a naughty Boy, and turn obstinate, and don’t mind what Papa and Mama say to you….and pretend to judge….yourselves capable of distinguishing between Good and Evil; then everybody will hate you and say you’re a graceless and undutiful Child; your Parents and Masters will be obliged to whip you severely….”

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Acts of Charles Townshend 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 euphoria in America that followed the British Parliament’s repeal of the Stamp Tax in 1766 was attended by wild celebrations all over the colonies. It seemed to those who had rioted and railed in print against what was seen as an egregious violation of the constitutional rights of the British subjects who lived in North America, that at last Britain was seeing the light and was willing to accommodate the desire of Americans that they be accorded the respect due loyal subjects of King and country.

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Madame Tussaud

Lead: Despite the advent of television and the internet, the biggest tourist attraction in Britain remains a bizarre collection of wax figures imported to England two centuries ago for a temporary stay.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Marie Tussaud (nee Grosholz) did her apprenticeship with Philippe Curtius in the heady revolutionary days of Paris, 1789. Crowds of the curious flocked to their salons to see exhibits featuring among other oddities, King Louis XVI and his Queen Marie-Antoinette eating their inedible dinner in frozen solitude. The most avid interest then and now continues to be the Chamber of Horrors, the waxed collection of notorious murderers caught in the act of taking their victims.

Agincourt II

Lead: Trapped by a huge French Army, the common soldiers of English King Henry V surprised even themselves with a stunning victory at Agincourt.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Essayist John Keegan writes that it is often not the great strategy of generals that decides the outcome of battle, but rather the actions of ordinary soldiers and the accidents of circumstance. This was certainly proven at Agincourt in October 1415. The English were in northern France pursuing their young King Henry V’s claim to the French throne, and they were blocked just short of the English-held port of Calais by as many as 25,000 French armored knights and infantry. Instead of surrendering, Henry turned to fight at the tiny village of Agincourt.

 

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Agincourt I

Lead: In the summer of 1415, against hopeless odds, the tiny army of King Henry V of England annihilated a much larger French Army near the village of Agincourt.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: For nearly a century after 1338, the English had been trying to take control of the French throne. The so-called Hundred Years War was at base a bloody dynastic dispute between the royal houses of two of Europe’s great powers. If England won, its King would rule both countries. If France won, the English would no longer hold territory on the Continent.

 

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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.