It wasn't as rowdy as Boston,
By Charles W. Brewster
Editors Note: C.W. Brewster was a Portsmouth columnist in the mid-1800's. This article includes his opinions and may not reflect current research or current values.
READ: Paul Revere's Other Ride
THE old North Church has some political as well as religious reminiscences. Before the Court House was built, all town meetings were held there; and in the times of the Revolution, some public meetings on the affairs of the country. We find the following account of a PORTSMOUTH TEA PARTY, held in that place, not to drink, but to discontinue the use of that beverage at a time when the spirit of the colonies required it. That there was a patriotic feeling in that party, the resolutions show. At a meeting of the freeholders and other inhabitants of the town of Portsmouth, held at the North meeting-house December 16, 1773, for the purpose of consulting and advising upon the most proper and effectual method to prevent the receiving or vending of teas sent out by the East India Company, Samuel Hale was moderator, and the following among other resolutions, were passed:
Resolved, That the act of the British Parliament, levying a duty on teas, landed in America, payable here, is a tax whereby the property of Americans is taken from them without their consent.
Resolved, That every virtuous and public-spirited freeman ought steadily to oppose to the utmost of his ability, every artful attack of the Ministry to enslave the Americans.
Resolved, That the power given by Parliament to the East India Company, to send out their teas to the colonies, subjected to the payment of duties on being landed here, is a plain attempt to enforce the Ministerial plan, and a direct attack upon the liberties of America, and that it is an indispensable duty of all true-hearted Americans to render this effort abortive.
Resolved, That in case any of the Company's tea shall be brought into this port, in order for sale, we will use every method necessary to prevent its being landed or sold here.
Resolved, That whoever shall directly or indirectly promote, or in any way aid or assist in the importation of any of the East India Company's tea, or any teas subject to the payment of a duty here, by an act of the British Parliament, shall be deemed an enemy to America.
Resolved, That the proceedings of this meeting be published and sent to every considerable town in this government, and that a committee be appointed to correspond with them, and also with the several committees in the other governments.
Therefore, Voted, That Hon. John Sherburne, John Pickering, Esq., George Gains, Jacob Sheafe, Samuel Cutts, Esq., Samuel Hale, Esq., and Capt. John Langdon, or any three of them, be a Committee, for the purposes aforesaid.
Text scanned courtesy of The Brewster Family Network
Copy of Rambles courtesy Peter E. Randall
History Hypertext project by SeacoastNH.com
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