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Lawes Divine - Did You Know . . .

assembly jamestown burgesses borough

  • The assembly that met on July 30, 1619, at the church in Jamestown, Virginia, was the first legislative (lawmaking) body in America.
  • The Jamestown assembly gave itself a very British name, the House of Burgesses. A burgess was a citizen of a British borough. In England, a borough was any community that could send a representative to Parliament, England's legislative body.
  • The assembly approved the first tax in America on August 4, 1619. The burgesses decreed that every man in the Virginia colony must give one pound of his very best tobacco to those who met at Jamestown in payment for their services.
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