On this day in 1750 the Iron Act, or to give it its full title The Importation, etc. Act 1750, came into force. The legislative was introduced by the British Parliament in an attempt to restrict manufacturing activities Britain’s colonies, particularly in North America, and encourage manufacture to take place in Great Britain.
Mercantile theory at the time considered that the English colonists in North America were supposed to supply raw products to the mother country and not to compete with industries in England or take jobs away from workers in the British Isles. Provisions of the Act therefore included:
This was a continuation of a long term British policy, beginning with the British Navigation Acts, which were designed to direct most American trade to England (from 1707, Great Britain), and to encourage the manufacture of goods for export to the colonies in Britain.
The Iron Act, if enforced, would have severely limited the emerging iron manufacturing industry in the colonies. However, as with other trade legislation, enforcement was poor because no one had any significant incentive to ensure compliance. Nevertheless, this was one of a number of measures restrictive on the trade of British Colonies in North America that were one of the causes of the American Revolution.
This scene was built by James Pegrum as part of a series of models on important events in British and international history. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to see them first.
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