The American Struggle Free Writing Sample

Living in America has been quite the struggle. It’s been over 100, almost 200, years and Great Britain is starting to be more controlling over us, American citizens. I see no reason for them to tax us, just so they can pay off their debt for the French and Indian War. The British were the ones who wanted land on our ground. I’ve been living on American soil my whole life and have never been to the United Kingdom; for goodness sake, more than half of the population in America has never been there. All the taxes they are asking us to pay is ridiculous. In 1764 they passed a Currency Act that made the colonist stop issuing paper currency, which made it harder for us to pay the taxes they lay on us. The Brits just wanted America to have a very similar to their currency. This tax is making all the money we have no value whatsoever. It takes so much money just to buy simply groceries. It takes wheelbarrows just to go and get food. This is one of the biggest struggles Britain has given us. The Sugar Act was another big thing that the British parliament laid on colonist. This Act taxed coffee, sugar, lumber, iron, and some wines.

This angered all colonist, but I secretly think that loyalists don’t mind paying the taxes for the King. My big question is, how are you gonna tax sugar when so many people put sugar in their drink? That is like taxing milk. Another big struggle is the Stamp Act. This act was to tax all paper and documents in the colonies. This is such a big struggle when you just need licenses for your business, or if you just wanna buy a newspaper, you still get taxed for it. No one ever would have thought that reading about what’s going on in the country would be so expensive. We deserve representation over in the mainland. They are taxing us without our consent and it is getting our leaders angry. We need representation. We don’t live on the mainland anymore. We haven’t for the past 100 plus years. We need to show parliament that they can’t tax us for their war. We are Americans, we shouldn’t have to listen to the King when we live thousands of miles away. With everything going on, I wouldn’t be surprised if a huge battle breaks out. All of the colonists around me are going mad about all the taxes they have laid on us. Everything has gone out of control. On March 5, 1770, a battle rung out in Boston. Poor Crispus Attucks and five others lost their lives for it. I can feel there’s something coming soon. I don’t understand why Britain sent soldiers to America. It is like they are keeping us in a prison. If we step out of line the British soldiers are there to make sure we are in our place and paying taxes. The trial with the soldiers went terribly if you asked me. John Adams did make some good points when defending them though. Like saying that it was Britain’s fault for the shooting because they are the ones who sent the soldiers here that provoked the massacre. But those soldiers held the guns that killed 6 people. They were not charged for manslaughter and escaped the death penalty, which blows my mind because killed someone and they got off with nothing.

All this doesn’t add up. Adams was a strong patriot, yet he defended people who killed his own. Adams is also in a group called The Sons of Liberty. So he is known for not liking the British, which baffles me. Being an avid patriot has been very difficult. We get unfair taxes, we are not heard by parliament, and we are just another piece of land they think they can control. When we show that we do not like being taxed we get even more acts put on us. Like the Townshend Act but that resulted in the Boston Massacre. Also when you are a patriot you are fighting for years to have your voice to hear. You are fighting for your rights and your freedom. December 16, 1773, would be a day one of our biggest protest ever. The American Patriots had enough with being taxed by parliament and not American representatives. On that day the Sons of LIberty, lead by Sam Adams, planned to show parliament about the tea act. The Tea Act was to a bill that was passed to save one of Britain’s most important companies, the East India Company. That company sold tea to Britain at a mark up and then later shipped it to the colonies. The parliament decided to stop having their company shipped to England but have them shipped directly to the colonies. This angered the colonies angered the colonies and the Sons of LIberty decided to take action and show Great Britain how we felt about it. They dressed up at Indians and dumped 342 chest of tea into the Boston Harbor. This protest was came to known as the Boston Tea Party. Parliament was quick to push the colonies though. They soon passed the Intolerable Acts, but that only strengthened the tension between the colonies and Great Britain. The year 1775 was a big year, for us patriots. The battle of Lexington and Concord had begun. Tensions had been building between England and America.

April 19, 1775, was a big day, apparently, British soldiers were coming to Concord to capture John Hancock and Samuel Adams, famous patriot leaders. But thank god and the heavens above that Paul Revere had warned the colonist by riding a horse through the streets shouting “the British are coming”. He is a very brave man for that. Hancock and Adams had escaped and were thankfully never captured. The next day the colonial militia had gathered at Lexington and faced a very large team of redcoats. Neither of them wanted to fire the first shot but a shot was eventually let off and that was known as ‘the shot heard around the world’. Both sides then started to fire and the Colonials ended up fleeing to Concord. The redcoats ended up following them and they couldn’t find any weapons there. Then the Minutemen ended up firing on the redcoats from houses and trees, forcing the redcoats to flee. This battle had officially begun the fight for our independence.

The Life And Times Of George Robert Twelves Hewes: From A Shoemaker’s Apprentice To An American Revolutionary

From a shoemaker’s apprentice to a highly respected and important figure of the American Revolution, the life of George Robert Twelves Hewes in The Shoemaker and the Tea Party is thoroughly chronicled. Fundamentally divided into two parts, this book by Historian Alfred F. Young described Hewes’ experiences during his participation in perhaps the most important events in American history. Although Young’s work may appear as a simple historical biography from the cover, readers like me will soon discover that it is much more than that.

Using James Hawkes’ and Benjamin Thatcher’s separate biographies, Young was able, to the best of his ability, construct Hewes’ life. Though, not exactly without criticizing the two accounts first. The constant ‘lapse’ between first person and third person and lack of knowledge of the revolution in Hawke’s version gave it, according to Young, an ”as told to” and ‘[padded out]’ flavor (Young 8). On the other hand, Thatcher ‘could not resist embellishing Hewes’ stories or inventing dialogue,’ thus his version, ‘while fuller than [Hawkes’] is also more flawed’ (Young 9). I found Young’s comments on these accounts as one of his many achievements for this book because it becomes obvious that Young had done intensive research to get an accurate description of Hewes’ life. Such hardworking scholarship shows how qualified Young is to be the author of this book.

The beginning half of the book, I found, was the most intriguing. It primarily focused on Hewes’ exceptional memory. He could remember many details of his life, from early childhood to the War of 1812, which is admittingly impressive. Hewes was even able to recount how things looked and tasted. However, according to Young, Hewes’ recollection of his own emotions was the ‘most important’ because emotions are what makes memories vivid (Young 11). Either way, one memory, in particular, had Young skeptical. Hewes believed that he had worked with John Hancock during the Boston Tea Party in 1773, which is highly unlikely due to Hancock’s societal status at the time. This formed the core of Young’s understanding of memory: it can be constructive. Though ‘on balance,’ Hewes’ memory was ‘inevitably…shaped by his values, attitudes, and temperament’ (Young 12). To me, this is possible as people can recall events that did not happen and such falsity can typically be formed by personal principles.

The other half of the book examined the possible reasons as to why Hewes faded from history after the American Revolution, basically becoming a historical memory. He eventually emerged due to becoming a subject of interest. Furthermore, young also considered how the term the Boston ‘Tea Party’ came to be in this part. Although I found the first half of the book more enjoyable, I cannot argue with how well written and interesting this section was.

If Young had organized The Shoemaker and the Tea Party any differently, I would have gotten a completely different perspective on its content. Reading about Hewes’ memories first before learning more about his life and participation in events like the Boston Massacre, the Boston Tea Party, and the tarring and feathering of Malcolm gave me the impression that even if his memories are flawed, they are still important. Furthermore, it allowed me to understand the reasons behind some of Hewes’ actions, such as his anger after being rejected to go in the military for being too short.

I was never disappointed the aspects of the book, except for one thing. I, unfortunately, do not read many historical books to compare off of, so I do not know if this is common, but I found no satisfaction in the ending. There was no real conclusion of the book. I can say, however, that when I began to read The Shoemaker and the Tea Party, I expected a simple, third-person biography about one particular person. I cannot say that I ended up disappointed. In fact, it was better than what I had imagined. Not only that but reading Young’s opinion and view on different topics can be eye-opening and quite enlightening.

Moreover, the book contributed to my understanding of the topic: the American Revolution. I never knew who exactly dumped chests of tea into Boston harbor, all I knew was that it was done by members of the Sons of Liberty dressed as Natives. It was very fascinating to read that Hewes himself participated in it and what he did. I also never had in mind that bystanders would try to pocket handfuls of tea and could be seized for it. When I read it, it sounded like an everyday rebellion. Well, that everyday thing turned into history that caused a chain reaction to other events that would eventually lead to American Independence.

In conclusion, I believe that the purpose of The Shoemaker and the Tea Party was to discuss Hewes’ memories and life in great detail. The organization, such as the division into parts and the order of topics, proved effective. The language used is fit for an audience with high-school (and up) reading levels who have a basic understanding of history. I would only recommend it to a select few, as not everyone has an interest in history. Either way, I enjoyed this book, as it was a nice educational break-time read.

The Pilgrims’ Legacy

It is a well-established fact that the reason Americans today are able to express their views, opinions, pride, and joy is through the brave and significant pilgrims, that so desperately fled England due to religious persecution, and the ability to earn an easier and better living (McKenzie, 2013). But, it is what we did with our opportunity to become a great nation, and how we did it, that bases the premise of this essay.

To understand what led to the drastic decision of our founding fathers to succeed our mother country, you must first understand the cause of their dissatisfaction. The main and undisputed cause agreed on by all historians is: the colonist were drained, and tired. Tired of all their blood, sweat, and tears going into the sophisticated, and complex system of money making. Just so that money would be taken from their iron grip to be cast into the abyss known as the British Empire, through the system known as taxes.

What the average man would have trouble comprehending is the actual problem with taxes. Yes, your money is being taken away, and yes, you have little reasonable clue as to what the money is going to. But, “taxes are essential to the operation and function of the federal government, which provides constitutional functions such as maintaining a standing military”. (Fobbs, 2010). So essentially, you are paying for protection. Which is totally ok, until your protector oversteps their boundaries.

In this particular instance (brutality of reforms) there were many times when the boundaries were overstepped. The first major heinous act that set off vast disagreement was: the stamp act.” The Stamp Act of 1765 was the first internal tax levied directly on American colonists by the British government. The act- which imposed a tax on all paper documents in the colonies- came at a time when the British Empire was deep in debt from the Seven Years’ War”. But, their reason for calling change bogus was because of their understandable idea that only their own representative assemblies could tax them. (Editors, 2009).

After The Stamp Act of 1765 came a twine of events that did not end well, notably for the colonist. In 1770-5 years after The Stamp Act- the hatred felt for the British began to overflow, which consequently resulted in the Boston Massacre. A riot that escalated from a “street brawl” to bloody manslaughter. (Pruitt, 2018). But the injustice done to the American colonist did not stop there. Then came the tea act of 1773, which had one purpose: “To bail out the floundering East India Company, a key component in the British economy”. As a consequence of the hiccup that was the struggle of the East India Company,” The Tea Act cut out colonial merchants” (Editors, 2009). This caused an outrage which resulted in the dumping of tea in 1773 known as The Boston Tea Party. But, all of those things cower in comparison to the Coercive Acts. Which revoked the colonial charter of Massachusetts, and even closed the port of Boston (Pruitt, 2018). Be that as it may, in the long run, individuals progressed toward becoming exhausted and endeavored to shape a mainland congress which lectured taxation without representation.

Yet, even that attempt failed to succeed, because they failed to reach independence. Now, they started to understand that all Britain was doing was harming them as opposed to helping them. So, in return, something needed to be done. Unfortunately, this “something” resulted in the bloodshed of many during a series of battles in which the colonies held surprising force. However, there needed to be solution in which there was undeniable freedom, without the need of chaos. And, as the late Pauline Maier, an MIT professor said in a 2013 lecture: “Britain had hereditary rule…you could never have freedom so long as you had hereditary rule.”

Thus, the arrangement started to shape, and however it was not clear or simple, it was fundamental if they were ever to become autonomous. The agreed upon solution- introduced by a Virginia delegate- was a draft to declare the separation of the colonies from Great Britain. As a result, the rough draft was written by Thomas Jefferson, and looked over by the remaining founding fathers in order to provide a well-established grievance.

Not only were the bloodsheds and tyrannical force, as described in the previous paragraphs a problem. But, the religious, and philosophical beliefs of the people were affected as well. This is also one of the main factors that influenced and dissolved into The Declaration of Independence. And, according to Maria Mayo of the Huffington post, “Patriots argued that their fight was God-ordained, while many Anglican clergy were bound by oath to pray for the King and the royal family.” This shows the prominent pull of influence that divided the previous colonist nation from the interior, and illustrates the need and desideratum for their indivisible rights.

Now, it is hopefully apparent that the independence of our nation was relentlessly fought for. But, more importantly than that, it was well deserved. However, at this period in time, the nation of the Americas was still far from perfect. But the necessary step to break out of their intricate cocoon had been taken. And, would soon be seen as a key role in the making of one of the greatest nations on Earth.

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