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The American Revolution
The Colonies Move Toward Open Rebellion, 1773-1774
Announcement of the Boston Tea Party, December 20, 1773

The following broadside from the Boston Gazette announces the event that came to be known as the Boston "tea party." What attitude does the writer of this broadside display toward the tea party? What steps did the writer recommend to stop the importation of tea into the colonies?

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[The Boston Gazette]

Boston, December 20

On Tuesday last the body of the people of this and all the adjacent towns, and others from the distance of twenty miles, assembled at the old south meeting-house, to inquire the reason of the delay in sending the ship Dartmouth, with the East-India Tea back to London; and having found that the owner had not taken the necessary steps for that purpose, they enjoin'd him at his peril to demand of the collector of the customs a clearance for the ship, and appointed a committee of ten to see it perform'd; after which they adjourn'd to the Thursday following ten o'clock. They then met and being inform'd by Mr. Rotch, that a clearance was refus'd him, they enjoye'd him immediately to enter a protest and apply to the governor for a pass port by the castle, and adjourn'd again till three o'clock for the same day. At which time they again met and after waiting till near sunset Mr. Rotch came in and inform'd them that he had accordingly enter'd his protest and waited on the governor for a pass, but his excellency told him he could not consistent with his duty grant it until his vessel was qualified. The people finding all their efforts to preserve the property of the East India company and return it safely to London, frustrated by the sea consignees, the collector of the customs and the governor of the province, DISSOLVED their meeting.--But, BEHOLD what followed! A number of brave & resolute men, determined to do all in their power to save their country from the ruin which their enemies had plotted, in less than four hours, emptied every chest of tea on board the three ships commanded by the captains Hall, Bruce, and Coffin, amounting to 342 chests, into the sea!! without the least damage done to the ships or any other property. The matters and owners are well pleas'd that their ships are thus clear'd; and the people are almost universally congratulating each other on this happy event.

[The particular Account of the Proceedings of the People at their Meeting on Tuesday and Thursday last, are omitted this Week for want of Room.]

Capt. Loring in a Brig from London for his Place, having 58 Chests of the detested Tea on board, was cast ashore on the Back of Cape-Cod last Friday se'nnight: 'Tis expected the Cape Indians will give us a good Account of the Tea against our next.

Extract of a Letter from Philadelphia, dated December 11, 1773.

--"Your Resolutions of 29th ult. were publickly read at our Coffee-House last Thursday, to a large Company of our first Merchants, who gave three Cheers by Way of Approbation."

We hear from Philadelphia, that Capt. Ayres, in a Ship chartered by the East India Company, to bring their Teas to that Place, had arrived at the Cape of Deleware (Mr. Gilbert Barclay, one of the Consignees, being Passenger on board) but that the Pilots had refused to bring her up the River; and Letters being sent to the Captain & Consignee, inclosing their Resolves respecting each of them, that if they presumed to come thither, it would be at their Peril, and the inevitable Destruction of both Vessel and Cargo; in Consequence of which intelligence, it was said they had gone off, but whether to the Place from whence they cause, or same other Port, was uncertain; though this might be depended on, that they would not be permitted to land the Tea in any Part of that Province.

We are positively informed that the patriotic inhabitants of Lexington, at a late meeting, unanimously resolved against the use of Bohea Tea of all sorts, Dutch or English importation; and to manifest the sincerity of their resolution, they bro't together every ounce contained in the town, and committed it to one common bonfire.

We are also informed, Charlestown is in motion to follow their illustrious example.

Quere. Would it not materially affect the bringing this detestable herb into disuse, if every town would enjoin their Selectmen to deny licences to all houses of entertainment who were known to afford tea to their guests?

Our reason for suggesting this, is the difficulty these people are under to avoid dishing out this poison, without such a provision in their favour.
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