Stamp Act Congress Facts

October 7, 1765–October 25, 1765 — Quick Facts About the Stamp Act Congress

Stamp Act Congress facts and important details about the intercolonial meeting that set the stage for the First Continental Congress.

Christopher Gadsden, Portrait

Christopher Gadsden was a delegate to the Stamp Act Congress and said, “There ought to be no New England man, no New Yorker, etc. known on the Continent, but all of us Americans.”

The Stamp Act Congress is Also Known As

The Stamp Act Congress is sometimes referred to as The Continental Congress of 1765, the First Congress of the American Colonies, and the Congress at New-York.

Massachusetts Circular Letter Sets Up the Meeting

On June 8, 1765, the Massachusetts Assembly sent a circular letter to the legislatures of the other colonies inviting them to send delegates to a congress in New York to “consult together on the present circumstances of the colonies.”

Date and Location of the Stamp Act Congress

On October 7, 1765, delegates from 9 of the 13 colonies assembled in New York City, known as the Stamp Act Congress, to discuss the Stamp Act.

The Stamp Act Congress met from October 7 to October 25, 1765. The conference was held at Federal Hall. John Cruger, Jr. was the May of New York City and hosted the conference.

Federal Hall, New York City, Stamp Act Congress
Federal Hall, Wall Street & Trinity Church, New York in 1789 by Washington Irving. Image Source: New York Public Library Digital Collections.

Colonial Representation at the Stamp Act Congress

The colonies that sent delegates to the meeting were:

  1. Connecticut
  2. Delaware
  3. Maryland
  4. Massachusetts
  5. New Jersey
  6. New York
  7. Pennsylvania
  8. Rhode Island
  9. South Carolina

The colonies that did not send delegates were:

  1. Georgia
  2. New Hampshire
  3. North Carolina
  4. Virginia

There were 27 delegates that attended the meetings. They were lawyers, businessmen, and landowners. Some of them owned slaves, however, some of them, like James Otis, Jr. were abolitionists.

All of the men that attended were members of their respective colonial legislatures.

Founding Fathers at the Stamp Act Congress

Founding Fathers who participated in the Stamp Act Congress were:

Proceedings of the Stamp Act Congress

Proceedings of the Stamp Act Congress were conducted in secret. British officials, including the Royal Governor of New York, Cadwallader Colden, believed the proceedings were illegal.

On October 19, 1765, the Stamp Act Congress adopted a Declaration of Rights and Grievances, which stated, among other things, that:

  1. Only the colonial assemblies had a right to tax the colonies.
  2. Trial by jury was a right, and the use of Admiralty Courts was abusive.
  3. Colonists possessed all the Rights of Englishmen, which were in the English Bill of Rights.
  4. Without voting rights, Parliament could not represent the colonists.

Effects of the Stamp Act Congress

The Stamp Act Congress was Different than Other Intercolonial Meetings

The Stamp Act Congress was the first unified meeting of the American representatives from the colonial legislatures — called for by the colonies — to respond to British colonial policies.

Before the Stamp Act Congress, there were meetings between representatives from the colonies. However, those meetings were different because they were called for by British officials. One of the prominent intercolonial meetings was the Albany Congress of 1754.

A Slogan for Unification Against British Policy

Christopher Gadsden, one of the delegates from South Carolina, and a Founding Father wrote, “There ought to be no New England man, no New Yorker, etc. known on the Continent, but all of us Americans.”

Stamp Act Congress APUSH Review, Notes, Study Guide

Use the following links and videos to study the Stamp Act, New England Colonies, and the American Revolution for the AP US History Exam. Also, be sure to look at our Guide to the AP US History Exam

Stamp Act Congress APUSH Definition

The Stamp Act Congress was the first convention called for by the American Colonies. Its purpose was to discuss a unified response to the Stamp Act, a new British law that placed taxes on a significant number of Americans. Congress produced documents that defined American opposition to the Stamp Act.

Stamp Act Congress APUSH Video

This video from U.S. History Explained provides a quick overview of the Stamp Act Congress — the precursor to the First Continental Congress.

Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations, including APA Style, Chicago Style, and MLA Style.

  • Article Title Stamp Act Congress Facts
  • Date October 7, 1765–October 25, 1765
  • Author
  • Keywords Stamp Act Congress, Stamp Act
  • Website Name American History Central
  • Access Date April 16, 2024
  • Publisher R.Squared Communications, LLC
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update March 14, 2024