The Imperial Crisis: The British Crown was the only political institution that united the American colonies. The Stamp Act was the first direct, internal tax imposed on the colonists by the British Parliament and inspired resistance within the colonies. Nine colonial assemblies sent delegates to the Stamp Act Congress, a convention that met to coordinate the colonies’ response to the new tax. The Stamp Act Congress was short-lived, but it hinted at the unity among the colonies that would soon follow. Colonial opposition brought about the repeal of the Stamp Act in 1766.
The First Continental Congress: On September 5, 1774, delegates from all 13 colonies except for Georgia met in Philadelphia as the First Continental Congress to organize a colonial resistance to Parliament’s Coercive Acts.
The delegates included future presidents—John Adams and George Washington. After much discussion, the Congress issued a Declaration of Rights, affirming its loyalty to the British Crown but disputing the British Parliament’s right to tax it. The Congress also passed the Articles of Association, which called on the colonies to stop importing goods from the British Isles, if the Coercive Acts were not repealed. Should Britain fail to address the colonists’ grievances, the Congress declared, it would reconvene on May 1775, and the colonies would cease to export goods to Britain
Source: Continental Congress
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