What was the colonial response to the Tea Act?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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The British passed the Tea Act in 1773. This was a law that said all colonial tea trade had to go through the British East India Tea Company. The British wanted to help out this company that was struggling financially. The colonists were not happy with this law.

One reason why the colonists weren’t happy was because this law created a monopoly on tea trade for the British East India Tea Company. Also, this law did nothing to eliminate the existing tax on tea. The colonists viewed this law as another unwanted intrusion in their lives by the British.

The colonists decided to protest this law. In a few instances, the colonists were successful in getting ships that carried the tea to not enter our ports. In Boston, the colonists entered the ships docked at the harbor and threw the tea into the water. This was called the Boston Tea Party.

The British responded with very harsh laws called the Intolerable Acts. These laws punished the colonists, mainly those in Massachusetts, for the Boston Tea Party. The Boston Tea Party and the Intolerable Acts pushed us closer to war with Great Britain.

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