'Circumstances Not Principles': Elite Control of the Newport Stamp Act Riots

Thomas argues that Newport, Rhode Island's merchant-elite effectively controlled and manipulated lower- and lower-middle class rioters throughout the Stamp Act protests of 1765 and 1766. The wealthy commercial classes pushed maritime workers to riot in order to persuade British leaders to repeal the tax measure. Thomas article challenges Shelia Skemp's conclusions in her 1989 article in Rhode Island History.

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Allen Mansfield Thomas
Publication Info:
Newport History 1995 67(3): 128-143

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