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The British government had enormous problems after the enduring victory over France in the Seven Years War The Seven Years War had virtually doubled the national public debt and the attainment of half the territory in North America had vastly compounded the problems of controlling the empire These circumstances required new revenues for the empire and the ruling circles in Great Britain believed that the colonists were best able to provide the necessary funds to re-pay the national public debt American History Vol 1 p123 Accordingly measures to secure enforcement of the Navigation Acts which excluded all non-British ships from the colonial carrying trade were adopted by the British Parliament in 1764 In order to obtain additional revenue Parliament in 1765 replaced the Molasses Act with a Stamp Act requiring Americans to validate various documents transactions and purchases by buying and applying stamps issued by the royal government Encarta Sugar Molasses Act 1999There was a widespread anger among the American colonists with the passage of the Stamp Act especially in states such as Virginia New York and Massachusetts Protest meetings riotous demonstrations and other manifestations of popular hostility occurred in practically every urban center from Massachusetts to Georgia Encarta Stamp Act 1999 Nearly all officials responsible for execution of the Stamp Act were forced to resign and many of the stamps were seized and destroyed Secret societies of patriots calling themselves the Sons of Liberty were formed in numerous communities Electric Library 1994 The inter-colonial upsurge against taxation without representation exploded in October of 1765 in the Stamp Act Congress which was the first important demonstration of American political unity American History Vol 1 pg 132-33 Although Parliament refused to recognize the adoption by the Congress of a petition of rights privileges and grievances the Stamp Act was repealed in 1766 Encarta Stamp Act 1999After a change in leadership in the British government the policy of imposing direct taxes on the American colonies was
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