Boston Massacre

Topics: American Revolution, British Empire, Thirteen Colonies Pages: 4 (1666 words) Published: October 22, 2013

“The Boston Controversy”

March 5th, 1770 marks a day in American history where an event took place known as the “Boston Massacre”. This notable moment in American history was a spark in the colonies that eventually led to the American colonies taking up arms against England. The “Boston Massacre” was the iconic nickname of a riot in Boston that led to British soldiers firing upon of colonists on March 5th 1770. The major controversy debated is whether or not the British officer on duty at the time gave the order to fire on the crowd or not. There have been many different stances on the argument but the fact of the matter is that the British officer in command did not give the order to fire into the crowd. To better understand why this British officer did not give the command to fire on the crowd one must first look into the situations in Boston leading up to March 5th 1770.

Boston in 1770 was a very volatile place in regards to disdain between the colonists living in America and their British counterparts. Two years prior in 1768, two regiments of British regulars were quartered in Boston to assist in instilling British rule on Boston1. This, along with the Stamp Act and Townshend duties, which were more taxes the colonists had to pay, placed upon Boston which angered the people to the point of riots before set a tone for an anti-British sentiment in early 17702. The soldiers in Boston in many cases caught the brunt of this anger. Due to the Quartering Act of 1765 there were British regulars stationed in colonies that had to be housed and fed by the colonial authorities3. This meant that the colonies themselves were responsible for the billeting and feeding of these British regulars. This did not sit well with the colonists. These British soldiers were also seen as a lower class in the colonies and angered many workers because these soldiers would often work another job when not on duty at a lower wage than the typical...
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