1 September 2012
3 Essay 2: Colonial Unity (1755-1774)
Beginning in 1754, the evolution of colonial unity experienced its jump start with the event of the French and Indian War in America. In entering this war, the French were doing fairly well; they’d just ensured the surrendering of George Washington and Virginian troops as well as the Native Americans that were helping them. The French and Indian had also begun attacking the settlements of Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and South Carolina. After a breakdown in French leadership, however, the tables suddenly turned in favor of the Americans, with the help of the British, who successfully claimed victory in 1763.
The great victory and power of the British Empire led to conflicts that would ultimately ruin the relationship between the British and the American colonists shortly after. As a result of the incapability to administer the colonies and territories of North America, the British began enforcing harsh restrictions and taxes, which directly affected the colonists. The Stamp Act was a major one of many, passed in 1765, that taxed the colonists for legal documents including newspapers and publications. This sparked outrage in the colonists, and also acts that would ultimately begin to strengthen the colonies.
Referring back to the French and Indian war, the Albany Congress was configured during the same year, June of 1754. Seven representatives, one from each colony, met in Albany, New York, with the intent to discuss the Albany Plan of Union. The purpose of this plan, created by Benjamin Franklin, was to discuss persuading the Iroquois to aid them in fighting the French, and to also group the colonies into one alliance. Unfortunately, the plan failed due to the rejection in which none of the legislatures present during the meeting decided to ratify it.
Although the Albany Congress proved to be unsuccessful in unifying the American colonies, future attempts were made by the...