After the British victory in the French and Indian War, England imposed stricter trade and governmental sanctions on its American colonies, partly to exercise more control over the colonials but also to reduce large debts which were incurred after a very expensive victory against the French in North America. Between 1754 and 1763, Britain's debt more than doubled and the costs of defending and organizing these lands placed a tremendous financial burden on the British Crown. Taxes in Britain were already high and many citizens wanted the thirteen colonies to pay their fair share. After all, they argued , the colonies had gained the most from the war and Britain had financed the campaigns.
Additionally, King George III wanted to keep a tighter rein over the colonies. Subsequently, Great Britain began enforcing the Navigation Acts and imposed new and more restrictive taxes. The Navigation Acts had been passed in the 1660's to control international trade; they required the colonists to sell products such as cotton, sugar, indigo and tobacco only to England. Furthermore, they also limited what products could be developed in the colonies, which forced the colonials to purchase certain goods only from British companies.
Britain's next step was to pass the Sugar Act of 1764 which placed taxes on sugar, molasses, coffee and cloth. This act also provided new rules which discouraged smugglers who sought to import products which had not been previously taxed in England.
The colonists also reacted negatively to the Quartering Act of 1765 which forced them to feed and house soldiers sent from England to "protect" the thirteen colonies. By the end of the year, more than 10,000 troops had been sent to America.
Apparently, these measures had not generated enough monies or the Crown was displeased with their control polices because in 1765, the British announced the Stamp Act which taxed marriage licenses, land deeds, wills, newspapers, college diplomas and approximately fifty other sundry items. By the end of 1765, Britain's relations with its American colonies had become strained at best.