Book Review: George Hewes Biographical Moments

Pages: 5 (1430 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  Level: College Junior  ·  Topic: American History  ·  Buy This Paper


[. . .] This is an interesting aspect to the story about the revolution because it was foster from bottom up and not the top down. The same ideas that led Hewes to The Tea Party eventually got him credit for the phrase in the Constitution of the United States, "All men are created equal."

Hewes' Memories

Throughout history the press and historians have successfully "spun" events for the purpose of furthering their own views. This is especially true during the colonial period in regards to the events which eventually manifested into the American Revolution. In this period it was typically for most information about the events to be passed on primarily through word of mouth. Hewes recollections of the events that took place were passed along in his own interpretation. His recollections of the dumping of the tea into the harbor lead the reemergence of how significant the dumping of the tea was for the United States of America. However, stories of Hewes were also spun in order to alter the views of others.

Hewes was a figure that was present at the Boston massacre and then later at The Boston Tea Party. At the time it was not that interesting to many colonists'. In fact, the term "Tea Party" does not arise until the 1830s. The 'discovery' of George Robert Twelves Hewes was primarily limited to his family and the circles around him until 1834 when the unknown historical figure was provided more press. It is reasonable to argue that Hewes perspective helped to illustrate how revolutionary the dumping of the tea really was. Before the Tea Party, the dumping of the tea was a significant event for most colonists.

Many colonists viewed the event as act that subsequently over stepped the boundaries; most viewed it as something of a radical event. Yet their actions would inevitably lead to severe retaliation from Great Britain in the form of legislation known as the Intolerable Acts. The Intolerable Acts were enacted upon the colonies which gave Parliament the power to move the trials of the colonies back to England if the King feared that the jury would not try the case fairly. Furthermore, all law officers were deemed as legitimate only by appointment by the royal governor and the town meetings which didn't have explicit approval of the royal governor were banned. The Intolerable acts also had two additional clauses that closed the port of Boston until the price of the dumped tea was reclaimed. These events led to the start of the American Revolution and the fight for independence. The "discovery" of Hewes successfully illustrates how the Sons of Liberty help ignite the start the American Revolution.

Hewes, despite whatever inaccuracies may be present in the stories about him, helped foster a renew spirit of patriotism during the 1830s. After the propaganda was successfully constructed, the dumping of the tea looked at as destruction but rather looked upon as something more substantial. Because of Hewes and those who wrote about him, the public viewed the dumping of the tea as something more symbolic. This helped to create a new spin on the Boston Tea Party which is reverberated in most analysis. The catch phrase that emerged was "No taxation without representation" which was said by Patrick Henry at the Stamp Act congress in 1765 before the Boston Massacre or dumping of the tea even happened.

It is often hard to imagine what life was like before the internet. In most cases the history of the age was typically passed down orally from generation to generation. Figures that made the transformation of the dumping of the tea come to life with new stories were born with new heroes. For instance, a common person would only know about what George Washington and other important figures in American history through the stories that were told at dinner time. Young provides a balance of knowledge from Hewes as well as his own insight into the historical events that unfolded. After reading Young's book, one can draw comparisons to modern day history and the amount of spin that is still present. Yet dissecting history from multiple perspectives can offer a broader and more comprehensive illustration of what actually happened.



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Cite This Book Review:

APA Format

George Hewes Biographical Moments.  (2013, April 20).  Retrieved June 15, 2019, from

MLA Format

"George Hewes Biographical Moments."  20 April 2013.  Web.  15 June 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"George Hewes Biographical Moments."  April 20, 2013.  Accessed June 15, 2019.