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Ben Franklin's Almanac by Candace Fleming

Ben Franklin's Almanac by Candace Fleming

Author:Candace Fleming
Language: eng
Format: epub
Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Published: 2015-07-17T16:00:00+00:00


REVOLUTIONARY MEMORABILIA

Those who give up essential liberty to preserve a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty, nor safety.

—BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, 1759

The War Before

The dispute between England and the American colonies had been simmering since the French and Indian War began in 1756. France and England, each with their Native American allies, had fought for years over who would rule North America. The largest group of Native Americans known as the Iroquois of New York—a confederacy of six Indian nations—sided with England, while most of the other native tribes sided with France. After seven years of fighting, England emerged victorious. France’s holdings in North America were greatly reduced.

But England’s problems were far from over. The war had left that country with a huge debt. The government needed money to pay that debt, as well as to support the thousands of British soldiers who would now be required to patrol America’s wilderness frontier. Where could money be found? King George III and his advisers turned to America. The colonists, they declared, should pay for the cost of the war through taxes.

Americans disagreed. They had fought as faithful British subjects in the war. They had given money, too, piling up their own war debt. Besides, they didn’t want all those British troops living in their midst. They had their own militias—that is, volunteer armies—and while these militias were not well armed, or well trained, they felt perfectly capable of defending themselves. More important, they insisted they should not be taxed at all by Parliament. It was their right, colonists argued, to vote on their own taxes in their own assemblies, as they’d been doing all along.



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