Quartering Act (1774)

As part of the Coercive Acts, Lord North’s disciplinary program against Massachusetts following the Boston Tea Party, Parliament amended the Quartering acts of 1765 and 1766.

In 1768, the Boston Whigs, taking advantage of the absence of barracks in Boston itself, attempted to quarter the troops in Castle William rather than in Boston where they were urgently needed.

Under previous legislation, the colonies were required to provide soldiers with living accommodations in public facilities, such as inns and taverns or unoccupied buildings. The revised law authorized billeting soldiers in occupied facilities, including private homes. However, the Boston patriots were able to force the British troops to remain camped on the Boston Common until November, 1774, by refusing to allow workmen to repair the buildings General Gage had selected for quarters.

The Quartering Act differed from the other Coercive Acts in that its terms applied to all of the American colonies, not Massachusetts alone.


See timeline of the American Revolution.