The News Media and the Making of America, 1730-1865

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The New-Hampshire Gazette, published by Daniel Fowle (ca. 1715-87), was typical of many newspapers throughout the colonies that protested the steep taxes instituted by the Stamp Act on virtually every aspect of a printer’s business. Printers…

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This broadside proclaims the “Glorious News” that on March 18, 1766, the king had given his assent to Parliament’s act to repeal the Stamp Act. In order to authenticate the news, the broadside explains exactly where it came from: a ship of John…

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While newspapers decried in print the occupation of Boston by British troops beginning in 1768, Paul Revere (1734-1818), a silversmith and engraver in Boston, also did so visually. This engraving shows Boston Harbor facing the north part of town,…

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Paul Revere (1734-1818) was a silversmith and engraver born and raised in Boston. Though The Bloody Massacre, often referred to as “The Boston Massacre,” was not Paul Revere’s first foray into using engraving as commentary on news events and…

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The first newspaper to appear in America outside Boston was the American Weekly Mercury, launched by Andrew Bradford (1686-1742) in Philadelphia in 1719. His father, William Bradford (1663-1752), had opened the first print shop in the new city of…

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Although it is now the calligraphic version of the Declaration—commissioned by Congress and signed by all the members after it had been accepted by the colonies—that is most familiar today, it was actually through the printed version that the…

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In 1690, a recent immigrant to Boston, Benjamin Harris (d. 1716), decided the time was right to launch a newspaper. In the wake of the Glorious Revolution of 1688 and the royal regime change in England, colonists longed for news from home. Harris,…

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This broadside, printed in Boston in April 1773, contains the text of a letter from the Virginia House of Burgesses informing Boston of the creation of a standing Committee of Correspondence and assuring the New Englanders of Virginia’s…

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Maps were an important form of news gathering and reporting during the American Revolution. Most were created by engineers in the British army and often they depicted military campaigns or battles, providing not only important intelligence about the…
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