The Boston Tea Party Quiz


By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

The infamous Boston Tea Party inspired many movements, the American Revolution and a 21st-century political group among them. What do you know about the Boston Tea Party? Take this quiz to test your knowledge.

When was the Boston Tea Party?

The tea was dumped into Boston Harbor on Dec. 16, 1773.


For how long had colonists been required to buy only British tea?

It had been 52 years: Starting in 1721, the colonies could import tea from England only.


What was the set of four acts passed in 1767 that set off colonists' anger about taxes?

The Townshend Acts imposed taxes on a number of goods, including tea.


For whose salaries was the revenue from the Townshend Acts used?

The revenue stayed in the colonies, but it was also a way for England to exert control over governors and judges.


When the people of Boston were organizing boycotts of British goods after the Townshend Acts, what homegrown drink was proposed as an alternative to tea?

New England rum was touted as an acceptable American-made substitute for tea.


Because of the high taxes, smuggled tea from this country was in high demand in both England and the Colonies.

Cheap Dutch tea was in high demand, and parliament was determined to find a way to undercut the smugglers.


Which British prime minister imposed all these taxes?

Frederick, Lord North, was the prime minister of Great Britain from 1770-82.


What was the tea company at the root of the whole problem?

The British East India Co. had had a monopoly on British tea importation since 1968, but it was losing money and had a inventory surplus because of the smugglers.


When was the Tea Act passed?

The Tea Act was passed on May 10, 1773. It gave the East India Co. a monopoly on the tea trade to the Colonies at a price that undercut Colonial merchants selling Dutch tea. Plus, it named "consignees," a small number of merchants who were allowed to sell British tea.


In other ports, tea ships were successfully sent back to England. But this governor of Massachusetts insisted that the ships in Boston stay there and unload.

The governors of Pennsylvania, South Carolina and New York allowed the ships to return without unloading. But Hutchinson, whose two sons were tea merchants, stayed loyal to the crown and refused to let the ships leave.


Who was the de facto leader of the Boston Tea Party?

Samuel Adams, a longtime advocate for Colonial rights, negotiated with the tea-ship captains docked in Boston Harbor.


What was the name of the group that Samuel Adams led?

The Sons of Liberty was a secret society that most likely started in 1765 in response to the Stamp Acts.


From where did the Tea Partyers start their march to Boston Harbor?

The Sons of Liberty often gathered at the Old South Meeting House in downtown Boston. Five thousand people showed up at the meeting on Dec. 16, 1773.


About how many men took part in the Boston Tea Party?

It's estimated that about 60 men actually did the dumping.


How many chests of tea did they dump into Boston Harbor?

They destroyed 342 chests of tea.


How many tea bags does 342 chests amount to?

This is obviously a tough one to guess, but it's a total of 18.5 million tea bags.


What was the value of all that tea in today's dollars?

The Tea Partyers cost the East India Co. $1.7 million.


How long did the whole thing take?

Everything was dumped in about three hours, starting around midnight.


What were the names of the ships that were vandalized?

The Dartmouth arrived in Boston Harbor first, and the captain failed to get permission to leave without unloading. The Eleanor and the Beaver arrived later.


The Tea Partyers were disguised as warriors from this Native American tribe.

The Tea Partyers dressed as Mohawk tribespeople to hide their identities.


What kind of tea was dumped?

There were several varieties, but most of it was bohea, a popular black tea.


Where was the tea from?

Despite the name, all the tea in those East India Co. shipments was from China.


What was the British response to the Boston Tea Party?

The Coercive Acts included the Boston Port Act and the Massachusetts Government Act, which shut down Boston Harbor and put the state under martial law.


What did the Colonists call the Coercive Acts?

They were known as the Intolerable Acts.


Who was probably the best known participant in the Boston Tea Party?

Samuel Adams, John Hancock and other leaders of the movement didn't actually go to the wharf, but Paul Revere did.


About how long after the Boston Tea Party did the Revolutionary War start?

The Battles of Lexington and Concord, the official start of the war, were in April 1775.


When did the term "Tea Party" first appear in print?

For years the event was usually referred to as "the destruction of the tea." The much catchier "Tea Party" first appeared in 1834.


This man was the last surviving Tea Party participant. He was "discovered" in the 1830s and briefly became a minor celebrity.

George Hewes, then in his 90s, was discovered during the revival of interest in Boston Tea Party in the 1830s.


What's the name of the group that re-enacts the Boston Tea Party every year?

The Old South Association, named for the meeting house, puts on a re-enactment every Dec. 16.


What surprising event happened with the re-enactment in 2015?

The still-existing East India Co. donated 100 pounds (45 kilograms) of tea for the re-enactment.


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