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The Shoemaker and the Tea Party


Alfred F. Young wrote a moving historical piece about a young shoemaker and his role in the Boston Tea Party. The Sons of Liberty had disguised themselves as Native Americans and snuck onto three British ships in the Boston Harbor. They were angry about unreasonable taxations, stamp acts, and a growing presence of Lobsterbacks in the city. They wanted to punish King George. Tea was the drink of choice and the tea that was dumped into the harbor would be worth in excess of a million dollars today.

In Young’s tale, the shoemaker, George Robert Twelves Hewes takes part in important colony events against the British, particularly the Boston Tea Party. Hewes later becomes a Minuteman and sees action in battle. Hewes was also present at the Boston Massacre and lost a friend at the killing. He speaks of meeting Hancock and the first hand view of an actual tar and feathering.

This story that was unearthed by Young is important because it gives first person point of view and oral testimony of the events that helped to shape the United States of America. Additionally, this reflection can be linked, and is linked, to modern day politics. The book is divided into two distinct sections. Hewes, the son of a tanner, first relates his personal first hand experiences. In the second half Young tells us about the leaders were clear to distance themselves from the mobs, and their was a very strong sense of those who have and those who do not have.

In the second half he explores the idea of unalienable rights, the change in the city of Boston’s population and atmosphere, and the leaders conduct in the revolution. The piece unfolds in a very well researched, well written, and interesting style. There are times you will feel as if you are actually in the moment with Hewes in the middle of the forming of the United States of America. You also get an idea of how Boston has recognized that this happened in their city and how Boston handles the great responsibility of preserving, recognizing, and celebrating the city of Boston, his famed citizens, the events and locales important to the Revolution, and how it s\takes pride in all of this.

The book is a must read for history and political fans. Hewes and Young make the events realistic and give you details you may not have read or studied before this.

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