SAT Subject US History Practice Question 701: Answer and Explanation

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Question: 701

52. Which of the following was one of the main legal objections that the colonists made to Parliament in regard to the Stamp Act?

A. It taxed too many items used by the colonists in their daily lives.
B. It constituted an attempt to coerce the colonists to obey the crown.
C. It was a direct tax on the colonists.
D. It restricted colonial trade.
E. It placed extremely high taxes on colonial goods.

Correct Answer: C


The fact that the Stamp Act imposed direct taxes on the colonists was a key source of widespread indignation-second only to the fury provoked by "taxation without representation." In 1767, Parliament passed the Townshend Acts (which were indirect taxes) in an attempt to get around the direct tax argument. Stamps were required for many items used by the colonists, but that wasn't their legal objection (A). In 1765, the idea of coercion by the king was not the main objection (B). Explicit coercion did not come until 1766 in the Declaratory Act. The Stamp Act did not restrict colonial trade (D), and the fees were not unreasonably high (E).

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