Quick Facts About First Continental Congress
The First Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia’s Carpenter’s Hall on September 5, 1774.
Each of the thirteen colonies sent delegates except Georgia.
The Congress originally leaned toward endorsing a plan presented by Pennsylvania’s Joseph Galloway. The Galloway Plan urged the creation of an American parliament to work with the British Parliament in governing the colonies.
Before the Galloway Plan was endorsed, Paul Revere presented the Suffolk Resolves. The Suffolk Resolves, drafted at a meeting in Suffolk County, Massachusetts, was much more radical than the Galloway Plan. It proposed, among other things, establishing a free state of Massachusetts until Parliament repealed the Coercive Acts, boycotting trade with Great Britain, and arming the local militia in Massachusetts.
The Congress chose to support the Suffolk Resolves over the Galloway Plan.
The Congress established a pact called the Continental Association and called for a total cessation of trade with Great Britain to become effective on December 1, 1774 unless Parliament rescinded the Intolerable Acts.
The Congress drafted the Declaration of Rights and Grievances, also known as the Declaration and Resolves of the First Continental Congress, on October 14, 1774. Congress addressed and sent this document to King George instead of Parliament to demonstrate colonial loyalty to the Crown.
Before adjourning, the Congress agreed to meet again in the spring of 1775 if Great Britain had not adequately addressed their complaints.
The First Continental Congress adjourned on October 26, 1774.
British response to the actions of the First Continental Congress made war nearly inevitable. On March 30, 1775, Parliament passed the New England Restraining Act, which prohibited the New England colonies form trading with any country other then Great Britain. The act also New England fishermen access to the waters off Newfoundland and Nova Scotia.