East Indian Tea

Second Charleston Tea Party - November 1, 1774 

On November 1, 1774, the ship Britannia arrived in Charles Town captained by Samuel Ball, Jr. of the British East India Company.  The South Carolina Gazette reported that the “Minds of the People appeared to be very much agitated” by the arrival of seven chests of East Indian tea. An inquiry ensued with a refusal to unload the stowaway tea. Captain Ball did not deny “having the mischievous Drug on board”.

In his defense, Capt. Ball confessed that “his Mate had received them in his Absence”. The tea merchants were then induced to dump the chests overboard into the Cooper River as a sacrifice to “NEPTUNE”. As the tea was destroyed, many stood on the shore watching, and immediately dispersed after the dumping of the tea, “as if nothing had happened.”