BCC Two reasons why Hewes supported and participated in the war Comparative Essay

Historian Alfred F. Young comes from a group of young historians who have felt that it is important to tell history not just from the point of view of those on top (Thomas Jefferson, for example) but from the view of those on the bottom. The now famous cobbler George Robert Twelves Hewes of Boston participated in an amazing amount of events that led up to the American Revolution. Canvas, Readings in American History # 1.

Like many others, Hewes was transformed by the times. His reasons for supporting and participating in the war had a far range, from the personal ones (British soldiers bothering Boston women) to what we might term ideological ones (no taxation without representation) that were broader in their political meaning and applied to everyone in the colonies. First, identify these two types of reasons, and support them with examples or events that led to them. Then, describe what you think it might have been that transformed Hewes – made him see the larger, ideological picture and rationale for the Revolution beyond his personal and perhaps local / town reasons. Do you think that Hewes was a “typical American colonist”? Do you think that conditions in Boston were the same as in other colonial cities? Finally, what do you think Hewes expected that the Revolution would bring to him both as an individual and as an American citizen?


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