of military power on the civil establishment.
Chap. XXXVI.} 1768. Sept.
refused to receive this petition; and he admonished ‘the gentlemen assembled at Faneuil Hall, under the name of a Convention,’2
to break up instantly and separate themselves, or they should be made to ‘repent of their rashness.’
The message was received with derision.
In the same spirit, the Council, adhering to their purpose of conforming strictly to the Billeting Act
, reduced to writing the reasons for their decision to provide no quarters in town till the barracks at the Castle
should be full; and on the twenty-sixth of September communicated it to Bernard
, published it in the Boston Gazette
, and sent a copy to Lord Hillsborough.
The law was explicit and unambiguous; and not only sanctioned but required the decision which they had taken.
The paper of the Council proved a disregard for an Act of Parliament by the very persons who set up to enforce Parliamentary authority.
On the side of the Province, no law was violated;3
only men would not buy tea, glass, colors, or paper; on the side of Hillsborough
, requisitions were made contrary to the words and the indisputable intent of the Statute.
In the very beginning of the coercive measures, Boston
gained a moral victory; it placed itself on the side of law; and proved its enemies to be lawbreakers.
The immediate effect of the publication was, says Bernard
‘the greatest ’