ROYAL ORDERS AND COMMITTEES OF CORRESPONDENCE (1770-1773
MEANWHILE George III. had achieved what he felt to be a signal triumph. His ten years' struggle to divide and control the Whig aristocracy had been crowned with success. The Duke of Grafton threw up his office; and on the last day of January, 1770, Lord North, leader of the new Tory party of "King's friends," succeeded him as first lord of the treasury. Through this facile servant the king was at last able to try the hazardous experiment of governing as well as reigning.
At once the new ministry had to deal with the American problem. The Townshend acts were a decided failure: they had brought the colonies close to the verge of rebellion without creating a revenue. Near the close of the session in 1769, Pownall, in the House of Commons, had shown "that the total produce of the new taxes for the first year had been less than £16,000; that the expenses of the new custom-house arrangements had reduced the net proceeds of the crown revenue in the colonies to