What evidence suggests colonists saw themselves as British or were developing an American identity between 1763 and 1774?

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Evidence that the colonists continued to think of themselves as British subjects from 1763 to 1774 can be seen in the way that they demanded the same rights as British subjects living in the mother country.

It is notable that, in challenging what they saw as the increasingly despotic rule of Great Britain, American colonists openly referred to themselves as British subjects with the rights and liberties that that entailed.

American colonialists saw themselves as inheritors of a centuries-long tradition of liberty that the first English settlers had brought with them to America. They were therefore acutely sensitive to any infringement, real or perceived, of their rights as British subjects by the Westminster government.

At the same time, as discontent with British colonial rule grew, a distinct American identity began to be forged among the colonists. The most visible expression of this identity was the attachment of Americans to their states. This provided them with an identity that could, under certain circumstances, challenge that of Americans as British subjects.

Although the vast majority of American colonialists remained self-consciously British subjects right up until the outbreak of the Revolutionary War, there was always a certain local pride in one's state and one's community that had the potential to form the basis of a distinctive American identity.

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