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Wolfe Tavern Newburyport Bar Hefty Bill Shows Extent of Stamp Act Protests & Drinking


Montage: advertisement for Wolfe Tavern from the Boston Gazette (Boston, Massachusetts), 2 August 1762, page 1; sign and tavern photo from the Boston Herald (Boston, Massachusetts), 12 January 1908, Boston, page 36.


A bar bill from September 1765 in the town of Newburyport, Massachusetts, reveals a potent protest over the Stamp Act that overshadowed even Beantown’s August 14 revolt. The buzz that surfaced in a local tavern stamped out all other uprisings and the bar bill is still around to prove it!

The British parliament passed a Stamp Act on the American colonies on 22 March 1765 that created a hotbed of conflict in the colonies, especially Massachusetts. The act mandated that many printed materials in the colonies had to be produced on special stamped paper from London that cost extra – including newspapers, magazines, and even playing cards. The cry of “No taxation without representation” was heard throughout the colonies. Read more of my story at Wolfe Tavern Bar Bill


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