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The Coming of the American Revolution: 1764 to 1776

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Lesson for Core Concept #4: Conflict and Compromise

Robert Baker, Needham High School, MA

The decade before the Revolution began was a continual tug of war between those who wanted to force confrontation and those who sought accommodation and compromise.

Conflict and Compromise

Activity: Thesis driven DBQ (Document-Based Question):


This activity can be the basis of a take home essay or, if there is access to a computer lab, this can be given as an in-class assessment. In either case, the student will be able to read contextual information from the linking pages in this database. In that sense, the activity requires less preparation than a DBQ in an AP test, but it may provide good DBQ practice at the beginning of the course.

Throughout the decade prior to the Declaration of Independence, American politics and public life were characterized by forces advocating confrontation and by those favoring compromise.

This was especially true at the outset of the conflict, during and immediately after The Boston Tea Party.

Using the following 5 documents, discuss the forces advocating both conflict and those advocating compromise at this time. Be sure to identify the context of the document. (See Document Analysis Worksheet)


The Boston Tea Party

The "True Sons of Liberty" Weigh In
Tradesmen's Protest against the Proceedings of the Merchants ...
Tradesmen's Protest against the Proceedings of the Merchants ...

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342 Chests of Tea into the Sea
Boston, December 20. On Tuesday last the body of the people ...
"Boston, December 20. On Tuesday last the body of the people ..."

Article from page 3 of The Boston-Gazette, and Country Journal, Number [976], 20 December 1773

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Bostonians, Keep up your Courage
Tea, Destroyed by Indians
Tea, Destroyed by Indians

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Good and Loyal Subjects Speak up
At a Town-Meeting held in Marshfield ...
"At a Town-Meeting held in Marshfield ..."

Article from pages 1-2 of The Massachusetts Gazette; and the Boston Post-Boy and Advertiser, Number 859, 31 January - 7 February 1774

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The Coercive Acts

Paying for the Tea
To the Printers of the Massachusetts Gazette ...
"To the Printers of the Massachusetts Gazette ..."

Article from page 2 of The Massachusetts Gazette: And The Boston Weekly News-Letter, Number 3693, 14 July 1774

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