Anonymous asked in Politics & GovernmentGovernment · 1 decade ago

1. Who are the Sons of Liberty and what actions did they take?

as much detail as possible please so i can understand it.

2 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    "Sons of Liberty" has three separate meanings. The first is the organized groups of militant colonials who emerged during the Stamp Act crisis and disbanded when the act was repealed. More loosely the term means popular street leaders during the resistance to Britain. The New Yorker Alexander McDougall signed his 1769 broadside "To the Betrayed Inhabitants of the City and Colony of New York" with the pseudonym "A Son of Liberty" although he had taken no part in the Stamp Act resistance. Even more loosely the term recalls its generic use for colonials resisting the Stamp Act during debates in the House of Commons by the procolonial Isaac Barre.

    The issue the organized Sons of Liberty raised and resolved was a combination of general outrage against the Stamp Act and debate about rendering the act null rather than simply protesting. The earliest group was the Loyal Nine in Boston, who coalesced around Samuel Adams. Unlike Adams, who was a Harvard graduate and a gentleman, the Loyal Nine were for the most part prosperous artisans and small traders. They were literate and politically sophisticated but not members of the town elite.

    On 14 August 1765 these men staged a public drama beneath the Liberty Tree on Boston Neck, the strip of land that connected town to mainland. Their goal was to show people crossing the Neck how the act would impact their own day-to-day lives. The drama closed when a crowd assembled under the leadership of Ebenezer Macintosh, a shoemaker who was not one of the Loyal Nine. Reenacting and transforming the rituals of a traditional Pope's Day riot, the crowd attacked property belonging to the stamp distributor Andrew Oliver. Oliver resigned his post. Facing similar pressure, distributors from New Hampshire to South Carolina also resigned. Except in Georgia, the act never took force.

    New York City's Sons of Liberty operated differently. The Boston group disavowed the destruction of the house of Lieutenant Governor Thomas Hutchinson on 26 August 1765. The New Yorkers, however, disavowed nothing during the rioting in the city through October 1765 to May 1766, including the sacking of a newly opened theater. They also negotiated a mutual-assistance pact with Sons of Liberty in Connecticut. The group in Albany, New York, wrote a formal constitution. Philadelphia had no organized group. Artisans played large parts in Baltimore and Charles Town, but Samuel Adams was not the only outright gentleman who became involved.

    The great achievement of the organized Sons of Liberty was threefold. First, they turned debate about the Stamp Act into outright resistance. Second, they brought many outsiders into street politics, giving them both direction and discipline. Third, by their own militant insistence on a political voice and by the openness of some of them to domestic questions, they helped broaden the agenda of the emerging Revolution from breaking the link with Britain to questioning what kind of place America ought to be.


    The simple answer is that the group was an association of Patriots prior to the American Revolution dedicated to promoting liberty and limited government interference.

    During the summer of 1765, "The Loyal Nine" - a group of artisans and shopkeepers began to prepare protests against the Stamp Act. The group grew and became known as the Sons of Liberty. Benjamin Edes and John Gill, a printer and writer for the Boston Gazette were two prominent initial members. Other leaders and influential members included Samuel Adams, John Adams, John Hancock, John Lamb, Alexander McDougall, and James Otis. The group quickly grew to include over two thousand men in Massachusetts with groups in every colony by the end of 1765.

    The first commonly known act was the hanging of Andrew Oliver (to-be Distributor of Stamps for Massachusetts) in effigy on Newbury Street. This tree became known as the "Liberty Tree." The Sons participated in calling the Continental Congress of 1774 and coordinated via "Committees of correspondence".

    Charles Townshend, speaking in support of the Stamp Act during the Parlimentary debates in 1765, contemptuously called the American colonists "children planted by our care, nourished up by our indulgence...and protected by our arms." A member of Parliament and friend of the American colonists, Isaac Barre, responded by describing the Americans as "these Sons of Liberty." The name stuck.

    The Stamp Act's rates were significantly less than the lowest tax rates in place in the United States since the 1930s.

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  • Judith
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    The sons of liberty were just groups of colonists that were against British rule, they were let by Samuel Adams, they were the guys that protested against various taxes and tariffs levied on the colonies.Many of the members were of the printing industry (newspapers, gazettes, etc.) and i think they did the tarring and feathering and all that stuff... Hopefully it helps a bit more!!

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