Most Americans in 1776 were farmers. Some, were merchants. Others worked in businesses. Many Americans, especially the merchants, were angry at the British Parliament because it imposed taxes on American Trade. Anger at Britain's taxes was one of the major causes of the Revolutionary War.
During the Revolutionary War, the Continental Congress borrowed money from Americans, such as Robert Morris and Haym Salomon, as well as foreign governments, such as France, Spain, and the Netherlands. The Continental Congress printed money, but as the war went on, the value of that money continued to go down causing a rapid rise in prices of every type of good and service. British control of the sea which made exporting and importing difficults and expensive contributed to the high prices. When the war ended the newly freed United States was forced to come to grips with high prices and a large public debt. pictures, poems, and speeches, patriot leaders such as Paul Revere (1735-1818) and Samuel Adams (1722-1803) turned the relatively minor incident into a choice piece of propaganda, of "massacre" proportions.