Grateful American® Foundation

Who was Thomas Hutchinson?

August 13th

240px-ThomasHutchinsonByEdwardTrumanAugust 13, 1765—Thomas Hutchinson was a prominent loyalist politician in the pre-Revolutionary War era. Hutchinson became lieutenant governor of the Massachusetts Bay Province in the year 1758.

Hutchinson’s conservative ideology turned many colonists against him, including figures such as John Adams and Samuel Adams who viewed Hutchinson as a proponent of British taxes.  Hutchinson was strongly committed to parliamentary authority, however he opposed the Stamp Act of 1765. Hutchinson warned Parliament not to proceed with their actions, telling them “It cannot be good to tax the Americans … You will lose more than you gain.”

Hutchinson’s brother-in-law, Andrew Oliver, was given the job of implementing the Stamp Act in the province of Massachusetts. Many people believed Hutchinson secretly promoted British taxation due to his brother’s position. The brothers became a target for mobs of angry colonists.

On this night Oliver’s home and office were ransacked by mobs of protestors. On August 14, the mobs descended on Hutchinson’s home and demanded for him to formally deny arguing in favor of the Stamp Act. Hutchinson refused, and a moderate leader of the crowd had to interfere to prevent damage to Hutchinson or his property.

Colonists became even more opposed to Hutchinson’s ideology as years passed. He was replaced as governor in the year 1774 by General Thomas Gage. Hutchinson was exiled to England where he remained until his death in 1780.