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Coming of the American Revolution: Document Viewer
Massachusetts Historical Society
America's oldest historical society, founded 1791.

Back to Non-consumption Non-importation

"Summary of the Cargo of the Snow Pittt [sic] ..."

Summary of the Cargo of the Snow Pittt [sic] ...

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Trade Violators Exposed!
Although many merchants subscribe to the non-importation agreement, Boston patriots must be vigilant. Certain merchants continue to import and sell British goods despite the pressure to do otherwise. In August 1769, the Boston merchants' committee singles out John Mein, publisher of the Boston Chronicle, for repeatedly violating the agreement. Retaliating quickly, Mein identifies fellow importers in the Chronicle. He invites his readers to draw their own conclusions about merchants' faithfulness in heeding the non-importation pact. Merchants in other towns, particularly those who have upheld the agreement in spite of the financial impact, are shocked and dismayed. The effects of Mein's exposé spread well beyond Boston and the province of Massachusetts.

To examine all four pages of this newspaper, please see the online display of The Boston Chronicle, 17-21 August 1769

Questions to Consider

1. Make a list of at least 10 trade items prohibited under non-importation. Classify each item as a luxury or a necessity. Are colonists importing more luxury goods or necessities?

2. Mein prints the names of a few merchants in capital letters. Do you recognize any of those names? If so, identify that individual or those individuals. Why might Mein have wanted to call special attention to them?

Further Exploration

3. List as many containers (or packages) for goods as you can identify. What kinds of packages or containers are goods shipped in today? Visit a warehouse or grocery store in your community and ask to see how various items are prepared for transport.