A Dictionary of American History

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Author: Thomas L. Purvis  | Date: 1995

Stamp Act

Stamp Act (22 March 1765) This law was the first direct tax levied on the colonies by Parliament and was intended to offset by up to £100,000 the expenses of garrisoning the frontier with redcoats. As of 1 November, it required the colonists to buy specially stamped (watermarked) paper for printing newspapers, pamphlets, all legal documents, property titles, customs papers, commissions to public office, licenses, college degrees, and cards. The Stamp Act Congress protested the measure. Americans began a Non-importation Agreement, and nullified the law by forcing the resignation of all officials commissioned to exchange the stamped paper for taxes by December. Pressured by merchants and manufacturers to end the tax so that the Nonimportation Agreement would be lifted, Parliament repealed the Stamp Act on 18 March 1766, but also passed the Declaratory Act. Total revenues collected under the law were just £3,292.

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Chicago: Thomas L. Purvis, "Stamp Act," A Dictionary of American History in A Dictionary of American History (Cambridge, Mass.: Blackwell Reference, 1995), Original Sources, accessed April 21, 2018, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=CKNYZMZNMR8HYLZ.

MLA: Purvis, Thomas L. "Stamp Act." A Dictionary of American History, in A Dictionary of American History, Cambridge, Mass., Blackwell Reference, 1995, Original Sources. 21 Apr. 2018. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=CKNYZMZNMR8HYLZ.

Harvard: Purvis, TL, 'Stamp Act' in A Dictionary of American History. cited in 1995, A Dictionary of American History, Blackwell Reference, Cambridge, Mass.. Original Sources, retrieved 21 April 2018, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=CKNYZMZNMR8HYLZ.