|The British East
India Company had controlled all tea trading between
India and the British colonies. As a result of the tea
tax, the colonies refused to buy the British tea.
Instead, they smuggled tea in from Holland. This left the
British East India Company with warehouses full of unsold
tea, and the company was in danger of going out of
The British government was determined to
prevent the British East India Company from going out of
business. It was going to force the colonists to buy
their tea. In May 1773, Prime Minister North and the
British parliament passed the Tea Act. The Tea Act
allowed the British East India Company to sell tea
directly to the colonists, bypassing the colonial
wholesale merchants. This allowed the company to sell
their tea cheaper than the colonial merchants who were
selling smuggled tea from Holland.
This act revived the colonial issue of taxation
without representation. The colonies once again demanded
that the British government remove the tax on tea. In
addition, the dockworkers began refusing to unload the
tea from ships.
The Governor of Massachusetts demanded that the tea be
unloaded. He also demanded that the people pay the taxes
and duty on tea.