On December 16, 1773, a group of American colonists calling themselves the “Sons of Liberty” boarded three merchant ships in Boston Harbor and poured all their cargo—342 chests of tea—into the water, an event now referred to as the Boston Tea Party. The event protested tea imports, which colonists had boycotted due to “taxation without representation.”

The British government responded to the Boston Tea Party with a series of laws, called the Intolerable Acts by colonists. These acts closed Boston Harbor, ended self-governance and some judicial oversight in Massachusetts, and strengthened laws requiring colonists to support British troops in America.

Many veterans of the Boston Tea Party went on to lead the American Revolution, including Paul Revere, John Hancock, Sam Adams, Patrick Henry—and Benedict Arnold.

cargo
Noun

goods carried by a ship, plane, or other vehicle.

government
Noun

system or order of a nation, state, or other political unit.

Noun

part of a body of water deep enough for ships to dock.

import
Verb

to bring in a good or service from another area for trade.

liberty
Noun

freedom.

merchant
Noun

person who sells goods and services.

protest
noun, verb

demonstration against a policy or action.

representation
Noun

action taken on behalf of another person, group of people, or organization.

revolution
Noun

orbit, or a complete journey of an object around a more massive object.

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