READING Comprehension - Sixth Grade CAT
In 1773, English Parliament passed the Tea Act, which gave the East India Company a monopoly over the American tea trade. A monopoly means that only one company, in this case the East India Company, is allowed to sell a product, which puts an end to the free market. Although this made the price of tea cheaper, Americans realized that English Parliament was controlling American trade and had the power to harm American business at any time. Public protests of the Tea Act grew quickly. On December 16, 1773, the Sons of Liberty, led by Samuel Adams, planned to show English Parliament how they felt about the Tea Act. That evening at the Griffin’s Wharf in Boston, a group of 30 to 130 men, some dressed in the Mohawk warrior costumes, boarded the three ships and, over the course of three hours, threw all 342 chests of tea into Boston Harbor. The exact location of the original Griffin’s Wharf is still open to debate. This event came to be known as the Boston Tea Party. As a result of the Boston Tea Party, English Parliament passed laws designed to punish the Americans. Among these laws were the Coercive Acts, or Intolerable Acts, which, among other events, ended local self-government in Massachusetts and closed Boston's trade. In turn, colonists up and down the Thirteen Colonies responded to the Coercive Acts with more acts of protest, and by assembling the First Continental Congress. Then, the First Continental Congress asked the British monarch for cancellation of the acts and organized colonial resistance to them. The Boston Tea Party was an important event in the history of the American Revolution. The crisis continued to rise, and the American Revolutionary War began near Boston in 1775.