Boston Tea Party Hit Corporate Monopoly
The Boston Tea Party was a direct action against a corporate monopoly that led to the birth of the United States. The raiders of the Tea Party pledged silence for 50 years. One of them, George R. T. Hewes, lived that long and got his story published. He tells how the British government tried to give the East India Company, the biggest corporation of the day, a monopoly on tea, the biggest drug of the day:x70
The [East India] Company … received permission to transport tea, free of all duty, from Great Britain to America … Hence it was no longer the small vessels of private merchants, who went to vend tea for their own account in the ports of the colonies, but, on the contrary, ships of an enormous burthen, that transported immense quantities of this commodity, which by the aid of the public authority, might, as they supposed, easily be landed, and amassed in suitable magazines.
The East India Company sent big loads of tea to American cities:
Accordingly the Company sent its agents at Boston, New York, and Philadelphia, six hundred chests of tea, and a proportionate number to Charleston, and other maritime cities of the American continent. The colonies were now arrived at the decisive moment when they must cast the dye, and determine their course …