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Subject in a body where he is not represented. When
the Question is asked, Will any one deny that y e Par-
Ham 1 hath a right to tax the Colonys, it needs only to
ask again, Are the Colonys represented in Parliam* ?
The Writers against the Colonys, when they have
been thus pressed, have been obligd to adopt the
WordQStrtuaM; but we must first understand what
they mea!T~by being virtually represented, before we
can give their Doctrine a serious Consideration.
There is one thing however w ch perhaps may need



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS.



39



Explanation. The Colonists depend upon it. As
their Argument against being taxd by the Parliam 1 ,
because they are not represented, must be allowd to
be good, to be consistent with the British Constitu
tion ; yet they are far from desiring a representation,
for this reason only, because they judge it impracti
cable for them to be equally & fully represented in
Parliam 1 . Many things m be said to justify such an
opinion, w ch perhaps may occasion my troubling you
with another Letter ; in__mean time allow me just
to add^that the only way to preserve to y e Colonists
their rights, asJBritish. ^Subjects, consistent with their
acknowledgd. Subordination to y e supreme Legisla
ture of Great Britain, as it appears to me, is to con
tinue to them the same powers of Governm*, which
they have hitherto been used to, with y e same Checks
& no other: This is all they desire: Under their
several Constitutions of subordinate civil Governm 1 ,
they have from the beginning of their Settlem ts , ap-
provd themselves faithfull & loyal Subjects, ever ready
to afford their Mother Country all that Assistance
w ch can reasonably be expected from them, & there is
no reason to doubt but under the same Constitution
they ever will Yours & c

S. A.



TO JOHN SMITH.
[MS., Collections of the Earl of Dartmouth.]

BOSTON Dec 19, 1765

SIR

I should have taken the Liberty of writing to you
by Vessells which have already saild, had I known



40 THE WRITINGS OF [1765

your Intention to spend the Winter in England Your
Acquaintance with this Country its civil Constitu
tion its religious Establishm 1 the Temper, Educa
tion, Manners & Customs of the People their
Attachment to & Connection with the Mother
Country their Trade & the Advantages of it to
Great Britain, and their ardent Love of civil &
religious Liberty, makes you an Able Advocate on
her Behalf ; at a Time when her Friends have every
Thing to fear for her.

Perhaps there never was a Time when she stood
in greater Need of Friends in England, & had less
Reason to expect them : Not because she has for
feited them but from the Nature of the unhappy
Controversy, which has of late arisen between Great
Britain & her Colonys, while the Prosperity of both
depends on mutual Affection & Harmony The Na
tion it seems groaning under the Pressure of a very
heavy Debt, has thought it reasonable & just that
the Colonys should bear a Part ; and over & above
the Tribute which they have been continually pour
ing- mto her Lap, in the Course of their Trade, she
now demands an internal Tax - The Colonists com
plain that this is both burdensom & unconstitutional.
They alledge, that while the Nation has been con
tracting this Debt, solely for her own Interest, detachd
from theirs, they have [been] subduing & settling an
uncultivated Wilderness, & thereby increasing her
Power & Wealth at their own Expence, which is em
inently true with Regard to New England This must
certainly be esteemd of very great Weight in Point
of Equity ; for it has always been usual for Mother



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS. 41

States, to put themselves to great Expence in settling
their Colonys, expecting to reap the Advantage of it
in the Extent of Trade & Empire. But Britain reaps
all this Advantage without any Expence of her own
& solely at theirs But_Jt is said that this Tax is
to discharge the Colonys proportion of Expence in
carrying on the War in America, which was for their *1
^pfcn^e Tojjiis it is said, that it does by no Means ~"
appear, that the War in America was carried on solely
for the Defence of the Colonys had the Nation been
only on the defensive here, a much less Expence
would have been sufficient ; [there was evidently a
View of making Conquests, & by means thereof es
tablishing an advantageous Peace for the Nation, or
perhaps advancing her Dominion & GloryV But
admiting, that the whole Expence was necessary
barely for the Defence of the Colonys, they say, they
have already born their full share in the Aids they
afforded for the common Cause, & even much beyond
their Ability which the Parliam seem to have been
sensible of, when they made us Reimbursments from
year to year, to relieve us from the Burden under
which we must otherwise have sunk. gut is there no
Credit to be given to the New England Colonys who
not only purchasd these Territory S



settled them, but have also defended & maintaind
them for more than a Century past, against the En
croachments or rather Incursions of those warlike
Savages, with a Bravery & Fortitude scarcely to be
equald, & lyithnnt a Farthings Expenr.e to the Na
tion ? besides which they have always readily joynd
their Forces, when any Attempts have been made by



42 THE WRITINGS OF [1765

the Government at home, in former Wars, against
His Majestys Enemys in this Part of the World -
Often have they unexpected by the Nation, put them
selves to the Charge, of strengthning the Kings Gar
risons at a Distance from them, when they would
otherwise have been unavoidably attackd & lost-
Anapolis Royall will afford diverse Instances of this
in the Course of one War The memorable & suc-
cessfull Expedition against Louisburgh in 1745 was
undertaken & compleated, at their Expence alone, for
w ch they were indeed in part recompensd, when the
Nation was under the Necessity of restoring it as an
Equivalent to purchase the Peace of Europe. You
will easily recollect from your knowlege of our His
tory, Instances of signal & expensive Service done
by New England for their Mother Country which

./may serve to convince any candid Person, that we
{ have born much more than our Proportion of the

\ national Burden.

But there are other things which perhaps were
not considerd when the Nation determind this to be
but a proportionate Tax upon the Colonys : you are
sensible Sir, that her Policy has been to oblige the
Colonys to carry the chief of their Produce there &
to take off her Manufactures in Return ; & as they
must conform to her Price both in buying & selling,
one would think the Advantage she reaps by their
Trade sufficient. This is at least an indirect Tax-
But the Nation constantly regulates their Trade, &
lays it under what Restrictions she pleases The
Dutys upon the Goods imported from her & con-
sumd here, together with those which are laid upon



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS. 43

almost every Branch of our Trade all which center in
dry Cash in her Coffers, amount to a very great sum.
The moneys drawn from us in the way of actual direct
Tax, by means of these Regulations, it is thought
will very soon put an End in a great measure to
Trade, which is the means whereby we are enabled to
pay them Of this you are as able to judge as any
Gentleman, & if it be the Case, it certainly requires
the prudent & impartial Consideration of Great Brit
ain for all the Advantages she can expect to reap
from her Colonys, must arise from Commerce, by
which they have it in their Power to purchase her
Manufactures Their whole Profits, saving a very
moderate Subsistence for themselves flow in upon
her, thro various Channells, besides the Dutys before-
mentiond. The Stamp Duty, if the Act should be
enforced, will probably in two or three Years, take
off the whole of their remaining Cash, and leave them
none to carry on any Trade at a]l T__wish that Trade
Policy, as an ingenious Gentleman has expressd.
was_bgtter understood &; pyprrisr^ by the Mother
Country with Regard to the Colonys : By Restric
tions & Dutys she has even now enHancrp.rd the I^oss
of their Usefulness to her, whereas, by relinquishing
these^ Dutys, & giving them Indulp-encvs. they might
even make the the frencb Colony*; in America tribu
tary to her in the way of Trade, & repay her an
hirnclred fold,

If this Tax is demanded of the Colonists as their
Proportion of the Expence of defending them in the
late War, it is a Question whether any Regard was
had to the Sums, they have already advancd for that




44 THE WRITINGS OF [1765

Purpose. This certainly must in Equity have been
considerd ; from whence else could the Proportion
be found ? It is probable the Gentlemen in England
are not sensible of the Burdens on the People here
on that Account Some Persons here have had yearly
Demands of two, three & four hundred Pounds ster
ling & others in proportion in dry Cash, besides sump
tuary Taxes to support this Cause, & our provincial
Debt, as is the Case of other Colonys, still lys
heavy upon us, & is almost insupportable Besides,
in Infant Countrys, Numbers are to be reckned their
Riches, and you well know, Sir, what great Numbers
have been taken off from their Labors & Usefulness
to the Colonys, as well to recruit the Kings regular
Troops as to furnish their own Quota In one year
this Province alone sent out not less than seven
Thousand Men, all of whom were usefull to the
Mother Country exclusive of their being Soldiers, as
they consumd her Manufactures in the Service, while
in every other Respect but their being Soldiers, tho
as good as any in the Kings Service, they were more
than lost to the Province that immediately employd
them.

But there is another Consideration which. makes
the^Stamp Act obnoxious to the People here. & that
annihilates as they apprehend their



essential Rights ?^ F.ngrlfcVfmen. The first Settlers of
New England were cruelly persecuted in their Native
Country at a Time, when the Nation was infatuated
with Bigotry, & in Consequence the publick Religion
reducd to mere Form & Ceremony This indued
them to cross an untryd Ocean & take Shelter in this



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS, 45

dreary Wilderness Immediately after their Arrival
here they solemnly recognizd their Allegiance to their
Sovereign in England, & the Crown graciously ac-
knowledg d them granted them Charter Privileges,
& declared them & their Heirs for ever entitled to all
the Libertys & Immunitys of free & natural born
Subjects of the Realm The other Colonys are by
Charter or other Royal Institution thus acknowlegd
Indeed as they were good Subjects in England, &
were not prohibited leaving the Kingdom their Re
moval could not disfranchise them, tho they were
once told by an haughty Bashaw, you well rem~ber
who I mean, that they could not expect their Libertys
would follow them to the Ends of the Earth

them all the Riht



Laws of the Mother State-^Thf* Rritigh C nng titntion
makes no Distinction between ^porl Snhjppfs in P^int
oLLiberty To talk of British Subjects free, & of
other British Subjects not so free is absurd, they are
all alike free The British Constitution is founded in
the_JPrinciples of Nature and Reason it admits of
no moj:e Power over the Subject than is necessary
fonthe Support of Governing which was originally de-
signd for the Preservation o



oj Nature Tt^_enga.ges to all Men th p f"H F.njny-
ment of these Rights, who take Refuge in her
osome_ Foreigners who have resided a certain
Time in the Colonys & behaved well & taken the
Oaths of Allegiance are not only receivd into the
Arms of her Protection, but by Act of Parliairt are
also declard to be as free as natural born Subjects ; in
which Act it is to be observd ; that the Colonists



46 THE WRITINGS OF [1765



as such, & even conggexd Erop1e__after
swearing Allegiance are also entitled to the__same
Honor Happiness & Freedom.

The Question then isjwhat the Rights of free
Subjects of Britain are jj Without entering into a
nice Disquisition of the full Extent of these Rights,
which would require much greater Ability than I
have, it is sufficient for the present purpose to say,
that tif rnain Pillars of the British Constitution are



theJRight of Representation & of Trval by Jurys r
both of which thgjColonists lose by this Act :_ Their
Property may be tryd at the Option of Informers the
most detestable set of Men, in a Court of Admiralty,
where there is no Jury, & which Courts to say no
more of them, have been very little reverencd by
his Majestys good Subjects in America Great Pains
have been taken by Party Writers in England, who
in all their Speculations that I have seen discover
that they know very little about the Colonys, & if
possible care less than they know I say they have
taken great Pains to have it understood that we are
represented in Parliam 1 , but I trust to little Pur
pose No man of common Sense can easily be made
to beleive that the Colonys, all together have one
Representative in the House of Commons, upon
their own free Election. I am sure this Province
never returnd a single Member The Arts of Par,-
Ijam* and the Constitution considers every Individual
ig the R^fllm as present in that high Court_bv his
Representative upon his own free Election (see I st
James the I st ) This is his indisputable Privilege It
is founded in the eternal Law of Equity It is an



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS. 47

original Right of Nature-ANo man jn the State of
Nflf-nre ran piQfly take Anothers Property without
his Consent (Thg^Rights of Nature are happily in
terwoven in the British Constitution It is its Glory
that it is copyd from Nature It is an essential Part
of it. that the supreme Power cannot take from anv^
man any Part of his Property without his Consentrr-y
& so jealous is the Nation of Property that since the
revolution the Power of naming Commissioners for
the Land Tax is exercisd only by the House of
Commons yearly (see D r Ellis on spiritual & tem
poral Liberty). Tf th^r Colonists are free Subjects of
Britain, whjr r |i no one rlenys r it should seem that the
Parliament cannot tax them consistent with t^e Con
stitution, because they are not represented & indeed
ii^ does not appear to me practicable for them to he
represented there- As they have ever approvd them
selves, not only loyal to the Crown but ready on all
Occasions to afford it their utmost Aid, it seems
strange that the Wisdom of the Parliam should alter
the Method of obtaining it They have always here
tofore granted their Aid to His Majesty upon a Re
quisition made by Him, with the Consent of their
Representatives, which is strictly constitutional In
this way it was their own Free Gift This they es
teem an Honor which belongs to them as free Sub
jects, nor is there any Reason to believe they would
ever have forfeited His Majestys Favor in this Re
gard This new way tends toj disaffect them to the
Mother Country, to which you know New England
especially has always been firmly attachd Like their
British Ancestors, and I would fain hope their Fellow



48 THE WRITINGS OF [1765

Subjects in Eng d , they are jealous of their Liberty, &
can never think themselves happy unless thevjire
free British Subjects-^They are of Opinion that the
only way to preserve their Rights as such, is tojiaye
their subordinate Powers of Government rontirmpH
to them in their full Extent, which cannot he done if
they are taxed_by: P^rconc who ^n not & cannot
represent thejr]^,

I am Sir with all due respect, Your most hum e
Serv 1

SAMUEL ADAMS.
JOHN SMITH Esq r .



TO JOHN SMITH. 1

*-

[MS., Samuel Adams Papers, vol. i., Lenox Library.]

SIR

I should have taken the Liberty of writing to
you by Vessels which have already Sailed, had I
known it was your Intention to spend the Winter
in England. Your Acquaintance with this Country,
its civil Constitution, its religious Establishment, the
Temper Education, Manners & Customs of the Peo
ple, their Attachment to as well as Connections
with the Mother Country, their Trade & the Ad
vantages of it to Great Britain, their ardent Love of
Liberty civil & religious, makes you an able Advo
cate on her behalf at a Time when her Friends have
everything to fear for her. Perhaps there never was

1 The preceding text of this letter is that of the manuscript actually sent.
The following text is that of the draft retained by Adams.



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS. 49

a time when she stood more in Need of Friends in
England and had less Reason to expect them. Not
because she has justly forfeited them, but from the
Nature of the unhappy Controversy which has of late
arisen between Great Britain and the Colonies, while
the Prosperity of both depends upon mutual Affec
tion *& Harmony. The Nation, it seems, groaning
under the Pressure of an heavy Debt, has thought it
reasonable & just that the Colonies should bear a
Part ; and over & above the Tribute which they have
been Constantly paying to her in the Course of their
Trade, she demands an internal Tax which they think
not only burdensome but unconstitutional. Both the
Parties are greatly interested. The most powerful
of them assumes the Right of judging, and the other
appeals to her Wisdom & Justice. Is there not great
Reason to fear that such a Judge may be under an
undue Influence from the Arguments or Feelings
which his own Interest may suggest or excite.

The Colonists complain, that while the Nation has
been contracting this Debt solely for her own Pur
poses, they have been settling an uncultivated Wil
derness, & thereby increasing the National Power &
Wealth at their own Expence ; which is eminently
true as you are sensible, of the New England Colo
nies. This must certainly be allowed to be a very
great Weight in the Scale of Equity, for it has always
been customary for Mother States to put themselves
to great Expence in settling their Colonies expecting
to reap Advantage from an Extent of Trade &
Empire ; but Britain reaps all this Advantage of the
N E Colonies at their Expence & without any of



50 THE WRITINGS OF [1765

her own. It is said that this Tax is to discharge the
Colonies Proportion of the Expence of carrying on
the War in America which was for their Defence.
But how does it appear that the War was carried on
solely for the Defence of America ? Had the Nation
been only on the Defensive a much less Expence
would have been sufficient. There was evidently a
View of Conquest, and thereby, of establishing an
advantageous Peace, or perhaps of enlarging her Do
minion. But admitting that the whole Expence was
necessary for the Defence of the Colonies, they say,
they have already borne their full Share in the Aids
they have afforded, which the Nation seems to have ad
mitted, when she made them Reimbursements from
year to year in such Sums as they had advanced be
yond their Proportion. And is there no Credit to be
given to the N E Colonies, who not only purchased
these Territories of the Natives, but have defended
them for above a Century past against the Encroach
ments of those warlike Savages, with fortitude scarcely
equalled without a farthing 8 Expence to the Nation ;
besides which, they have always readily joynd their
Forces, when any Attempts have been made by the
Nation in former Wars, against his Majesties Ene
mies in this part of the World. Unexpected by the
Nation, they have often put themselves to the Charge
of Strengthening the Kings Garrisons at a Distance
from them, when they would otherwise unavoidably
have been attackd & lost. Annapolis Royal affords
diverse Instances of this during the Course of
one War. The memorable & successful Expedition
against Cape Breton in 1745 was undertaken & com-



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS. 51

pleated at their Expence, for which they were indeed
in part recompensed when the Nation was under the
Necessity of restoring it as an Equivalent, to pur
chase the Peace of Europe. You will easily recol
lect from your own Knowledge of our History, many
Instances of signal & Expensive Services done to the
Nation by New England which may serve to con
vince any candid Man that we have borne much more
than our proportion of the National Burdens. But
there are other things which perhaps were not con
sidered, when the Nation determined this to be but a
proportionate Tax on the Colonies. You are sensi
ble Sir, that it has been her Policy to oblige the
Colonies to carry the Chiefe of their Produce to
Great Britain & to take off her Manufactures in Re
turn. And as they must conform to her Price both
in buying & selling, one would think the Advantage
she reaps by this Trade would be sufficient. This is
an indirect Tax. The Nation constantly regulates
their Trade & lays it under what Restrictions she
pleases, and the Duties on the Goods imported from
her & consumed here, together with those which are
laid on almost every Branch of our Trade all which
centers in Cash in her Coffers, amount to a very
great Sum. The Monies drawn from us in the Way
of actual direct Taxes, by means of those Regula
tions, it is thought, will very soon put an End to the
Trade. Of this you are as able to judge as any
Gentleman ; & if it be the Case, it certainly requires
prudent & impartial Consideration, for all the Ad
vantage the Nation can expect to reap from the
Colonies must arise from Commerce. Their whole



52 THE WRITINGS OF [1765

Profits, saving a moderate Subsistence for them
selves, flow in upon Her thro various Channels.
The Stamp Duty, if the Act is continued in force,
will probably in a very few years take off the whole
of their Cash, & leave them none to carry on any
trade at all. I wish that Trade Policy, as a very
sensible Gentleman has expressed it, was better un
derstood by the present Rulers in the Mother Country
with respect to the Colonies. By Restrictions &
Duties she is even now in Danger of puting an End
to their Usefulness to her ; whereas by abolishing
those Duties & giving them Indulgencies they would
be enabled to repay her an hundred fold.

If the Colonists are to pay this Tax as their Pro
portion of the Expence in defending them in the
late War, I should be glad to know whether any
Regard was had to the Sums they have already
advancd for that Purpose ? This certainly ought in
Equity to have been considerd, or, how could the
Proportion be found ? It is probable the Gentlemen
in England are not sensible of the Burdens laid on
the People on that Account. They have never been
informd, that Persons here have had yearly De
mands of two three & four hundred pounds Sterling
by Way of Taxes, besides sumptuary Laws, to sup
port this Cause, & our provincial debt (which is the
Case in other Colonies) still lies heavily upon us &
is almost insupportable. Besides, in Infant Coun
tries their Numbers are to be reckond their Riches.
You well know what great Numbers have been taken
off from their Labor, & Usefulness in that Way to
the Colonies, as well to recruit the Kings Regiments



1765] SAMUEL ADAMS. 53

as to furnish their own Quotas : In one year this
Province alone furnishd for the Sea & Land Service
not less than Seven thousand Men. Those Men
were useful to the Mother Country, exclusive of their
being Soldiers, as they consumed her Manufactures
in the Service ; while in every other Respect but
their being Soldiers, tho as good as any in the Kings
Service, they were more than lost to the Province
that immediately employed them.

But there is another Consideration which renders
this Tax still more obnoxious to the Colonies, & that
is, it totally annihilates their essentials Rights as
British Subjects. The first Settlers of New England,
had been persecuted in England at a Time when the
Nation was intoxicated with Bigotry & the Ideas of
Ecclesiastical Tyranny. This indued them to cross
an untried Ocean & take Shelter in a dreary Wilder
ness. Immediately after their Arrival they recog-
nizd their Allegiance to the English King & he
declared them intitled to all the Rights Liberties
& Immunities of natural born subjects. The other
Colonies are by Charter or other Royal Institutions
thus acknowledgd. Indeed as they were good Sub
jects in England & were not prohibited to leave the
Kingdom, their Removal could not disfranchise them,
altho they were told by a haughty Bashaw, you know



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