How did the French and Indian War affect the colonies’ relationship with Britain?

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rrteacher | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

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The French and Indian War was very destabilizing for the relationship between the colonies and Great Britain. This was true for a number of reasons. For one thing, many British officers and royal governors were unimpressed with the colonial assemblies, many of whom refused to contribute funds to the war effort. These tensions continued into the postwar era, when Parliament attempted to fund the debt incurred during the war by placing a direct tax (the infamous Stamp Act) on the colonies. They also attempted to raise money by more rigorously enforcing trade restrictions. Both of these initiatives, especially direct taxation, sparked the imperial crisis that would degenerate into revolution. Another source of friction resulting from the war was the acquisition of the Ohio Valley from the French. American settlers and especially land speculators had long eyed this territory, and assumed it would be theirs for the taking after it was opened by the Treaty of Paris. But friction between Native peoples and settlers in the region convinced the Crown to close the area to settlement with the Proclamation of 1763. Colonists were bitterly disappointed by this development, perhaps as much so as by the Stamp Act itself. So, in short, the aftermath of the French and Indian War caused a crisis in Great Britain's relationship with the North American colonies.

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