An introduction to the life of patrick henry

Richmond was selected as better protected from royal authority. The convention debated whether Virginia should adopt language from a petition by the planters of the Colony of Jamaica.

An introduction to the life of patrick henry

This law was called the Stamp Act. It provided that stamps - very much like our postage-stamps, but costing all the way from one cent to fifty dollars each - should be put upon all the newspapers and almanacs used by the colonies, and upon all such legal papers as wills, deeds, and the notes which men give promising to pay back borrowed money.

When news of this act reached the colonists they were angry.

Introduction to the Virginia Ratifying Convention | Teaching American History

The charters which the English King granted to our forefathers when they came to America make us free men just as much as if we were living in England. We have no one to speak for us in Parliament, and so we will not pay any taxes which Parliament votes. The only taxes we will pay are those voted by our representatives in our own colonial assemblies.

One of these forbade selling their products to any country but England. And, of course, if they could sell to no one else, they would have to sell for what the English merchants chose to pay.

An introduction to the life of patrick henry

Another law said that the colonists should buy the goods they needed from no other country than England, and that these goods should be brought over in English vessels. So in buying as well as in selling they were at the mercy of the English merchants and the English ship owners, who could set their own prices.

But even more unjust seemed the law forbidding the manufacture in America of anything which was manufactured in England.

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For instance, iron from American mines had to be sent to England to be made into useful articles, and then brought back over the sea in English vessels and sold to the colonists by English merchants at their own price.

Do you wonder that the colonists felt that England was taking an unfair advantage? You need not be told that these laws were strongly opposed. In fact, the colonists, thinking them unjust, did not hesitate to break them. Some, in spite of the laws, shipped their products to other countries and smuggled the goods they received in exchange; and some dared make articles of iron, wool, or other raw material, both for their own use and to sell to others.

Among those most earnest in opposing the act was Patrick Henry. Let us take a look at the early life of this powerful man. He was born inin Hanover County, Virginia. His father was an able lawyer, and his mother belonged to a fine old Welsh family.

Patrick Henry - HISTORY

But Patrick, as a boy, took little interest in anything that seemed to his older friends worth while. His delight was to wander through the woods, gun in hand, hunting for game, or to sit on the bank of some stream fishing by the hour.

When not enjoying himself out-of-doors he might be heard playing his violin. They put him, when fifteen years old, as clerk into a little country store. Here he remained for a year, and then opened a store of his own. But he was still too lazy to attend to business, and soon failed.

When he was only eighteen years old, he married. The parents of the young couple, anxious that they should do well, gave them a small farm and a few slaves.

But it was the same old story. The young farmer would not take the trouble to look after his affairs, and let things drift. So before long the farm had to be sold to pay debts. Once more Patrick turned to storekeeping, but after a few years he failed again.

He was now twenty-three years old, with no settled occupation, and with a wife and family to support.From the recollections of men like Thomas Jefferson, Wirt reconstructed an account of Henry's life, including the remarks presented below.

Listen Richard Schumann interprets the character of Patrick Henry for The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. The painting of Patrick Henry's "Caesar had his Brutus" speech (discussed in the second lecture) is entirely romanticized -- neither Henry nor the House of Burgesses looked at all like this -- but it does show that hagiography of Henry, almost god-like veneration, began shortly after this death.

Patrick Henry (May 29, – June 6, ) was an American attorney, planter, and orator well known for his declaration to the Second Virginia Convention (): "Give me liberty, or give me death!" A Founding Father, he served as the first and sixth post-colonial Governor of Virginia, from to and from to Henry was born in Hanover County, Virginia, and was for the most Preceded by: Benjamin Harrison V.

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The idea that liberty is more important than life—and is maybe the most important thing about the United States of America—entered the American imagination with Patrick Henry's words.

It's this idea that has defined most of the awesome things that America has done. Patrick Henry was christened and remained, throughout his life, a member of the Episcopal “Church. His father and uncle both Episcopalians, had great influence upon the thinking of Henry.

His uncle was, in fact, a leading member of the Anglican clergy in Virginia.

Patrick Henry Introduction - US History Website - American History Study