Happy New Year

Posted by Helen Tuesday, January 02, 2007

A very happy and prosperous new year to all readers of the Conservative History blog (and of the Journal, whose next issue will appear in January). Tory Historian intends to carry on writing the somewhat random postings of the kind that appeared last year and hopes that many more readers will join in the discussions.

Together with my co-blogger, Iain Dale, I hope that many more of you will join in the Conservative History Group activities and, if you have any ideas about them, please let us know either here or through the Conservative History Group website.

In the meantime, let me remind everyone of an interesting historical date. On January 2, 1776 the Continental Congress published the Tory Act, a set of instructions on how to deal with those misguided, misinformed and mistaken individuals who persisted in supporting loyally their King and Country, that is George III and Great Britain.

The instructions were mild and smacked more than a little of a desire to re-educate those who have been “been deceived and drawn into erroneous opinions, respecting the American cause, and the probable issue of the present contest”.

Resolved, That it be recommended to the several Committees, and other friends to American liberty in the said colonies, to treat all such persons with kindness and attention, to consider them as the inhabitants of a country determined to be free, and to view their errors as proceeding rather from want of information, than want of virtue or public spirit, to explain to them the origin, nature and extent of the present controversy, to acquaint them with the fate of the numerous petitions presented to his Majesty, as well by Assemblies as by Congresses for reconciliation and redress of grievances, and that the last from this Congress, humbly requesting the single favor of being heard, like all the others has proved unsuccessful; to unfold to them the various arts of administration to ensnare and enslave us, and the manner in which we have been cruelly driven to defend by arms those very rights, liberties and estates which we and our forefathers had so long enjoyed unmolested in the reigns of his present Majesty's predecessors. And it is hereby recommended to all Conventions and Assemblies in these colonies liberally to
distribute among the people the Proceedings of this and the former Congress, the late speeches of the great patriots in both houses of parliament relative to American grievances, and such other pamphlets and papers as tend to elucidate the merits of the American cause. The Congress being fully persuaded that the more our right to the enjoyment of our ancient liberties and privileges is examined, the more just and necessary our present opposition to ministerial
tyranny will appear.
Sadly, as the war proceeded, many of these good intentions were abandoned and Loyalists found that they had to flee for their lives (those who managed it). Never mind – Canada benefited.

1 Responses to Happy New Year

  1. Anonymous Says:
  2. And Sierra Leone benefited as well, at least until more recently.

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