THE POLICY OF UNIFIED CONTROL
Imperial Defence -- Need for Greater Union -- Bellomont's Policies -- Navigation Acts -- Illicit Trade and Piracy -- Rhode Island and Connecticut Violate Their Charters -- Troubles in New Hampshire -- Difficulties of a Colonial Governor
THE experiences of King Philip's War and the recent contest with the French had made it apparent to the home government, as well as to many of the colonists themselves, that the system by which the English in New England were divided into different jurisdictions, jealous of one another and subject to almost negligible control by the mother country, was both wasteful and unfair to the colonies themselves. In the face of a united enemy it had proved highly dangerous. When the colonists had been unable to agree as to mutual help England had undertaken to fix their respective quotas for them but without success. The main burden had fallen on Massachusetts and New York, whereas the southern and smaller northern colonies had done little or nothing, frittering away their time and energy in excuses and recriminations.1
The general theory of imperial defence gradually being evolved was that England should fight her European battles without colonial aid, -- though the fate of the colonies might be involved, -- and be solely responsible for the naval defence of the empire. On the other hand, the colonies were expected to take care of the local defence of their own frontiers as far as possible. Provided England retained control of the sea, that task would have been entirely within the strength of the colonists, could they have used their combined resources in any efficient way. This, however, both their selfishness and their jealousy____________________
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Publication information: Book title: Revolutionary New England, 1691-1776. Contributors: James Truslow Adams - Author. Publisher: Atlantic Monthly Press. Place of publication: Boston. Publication year: 1923. Page number: 46.