American History: The Stamp Act of 1765

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A tax passed by the British Parliament in 1765 on the British colonies to help pay for the British troops stationed in the colonies after the Seven Years War. The British believed they had the right to tax the colonies since they were the primary beneficiaries. The colonists saw it as a violation of their rights for taxes to be imposed without representation.

The Stamp Act was protested throughout the thirteen colonies. Most colonies held demonstrations in response to it and their leaders petitioned Britain to repeal the act. Patrick Henry spoke such harsh words against the Stamp Act that many thought his words smacked of treason. James Otis and Samuel Adams were other prominent leaders opposed to the stamp act. The slogan “no taxation without representation” became the mantra for this movement.

American History: The Stamp Act of 1765

Great Britain would eventually repeal the Stamp Act due to complaints from their own merchants. Many of British merchants were feeling the effects from the Sugar Act of 1764 and the inability to collect debts while the economy suffered petitioned for a repeal of the Stamp Act. Edmund Burke and William Pitt were two members of parliament who fought for the repeal of the Stamp Act. Finally, the repeal was passed in February of 1766.