A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.


George Grenville

14 October 1712 - 13 November 1770

George Grenville entered Parliament in 1741 as a representative of the borough of Buckingham in the House of Commons. He served as treasurer of the navy, 1754-1762, was admitted to the cabinet in 1761, and, later that year, was appointed leader of the House of Commons. In 1763, Grenville succeeded Lord Bute as Prime Minister, and was charged with curbing Britain's growing debt. In an attempt to raise revenue in the American colonies Grenville introduced the Sugar Act (1764), the Currency Act (1764), the Stamp Act (1765) in Parliament. Colonists vehemently resisted these new regulations, arousing opposition to Grenville's policies within Britain. Frequent disagreements with his Prime Minister finally led George III to dismiss Grenville in July 1765, but Grenville continued to publicly criticize those who opposed American taxation.