What was the Albany Plan of Union? Why was it not put into effect?

Essay by NoTTiNzZzHigh School, 10th grade April 2005

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The French and Indian War started in 1754. The British were

unsuccessful in the beginning because of their lack of unity. Benjamin

Franklin saw this as a major problem and urged unity. In the

Pennsylvania Gazette, he drew his famous cartoon of a broken snake

with the caption "Join or Die." A meeting was held in Albany in the

spring of 1754 to address this issue. Colonial leaders, officials and

representatives from seven of the British colonies attended the


Benjamin Franklin and Massachusetts governor Thomas Hutchinson

together drafted a proposal of colonial unity to combat the war

against the French. It was called the Albany Plan of Union. The plan

would create new layers of government including a president-general

that was appointed by the crown. The president-general will manage

relations with the natives, and will be in charge of the frontier

lands until they became colonies. The colonial assemblies will appoint

members to a proposed grand council whose representation will be

determined by the amount of financial taxes paid to the organization.

The plan was approved by the members of the Albany conference but the

colonial assemblies refused to accept it as did the London regime. To

the colonists, it did not seem to give enough independence. On the

other hand, to the British officials, it seems to give too much.

According to Franklin's wrote that the colonies agreed on the need for

unity but could not agree on the details for unity.

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