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Patriots storm ships in Boston Harbor, hurl tens of thousands of pounds of expensive tea overboard

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BOSTON (DECEMBER 16, 1773) — A group of local colonists upset with British Parliament’s controversial Tea Act took matters into their own hands tonight and dumped hundreds of chests of East India Company tea into Boston Harbor.

More than 100 men, many disguised as Mohawk Indians, boarded three ships at Griffin’s Wharf this cold December evening and in the course of three hours tossed nearly 350 crates containing 90,000 pounds of tea overboard. The financial damages are expected to approach 10,000 British pounds.

According to local sources, the men are members of a secretive group known as the Sons of Liberty and were acting at the urging of one of their most-provocative leaders, Samuel Adams. Adams and his group have rallied against multiple attempts by Great Britain to impose taxes and regulations on colonists who have no government representation in London.

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