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Quartering Act

From Academic Kids

The Quartering Act is the name of at least two laws passed by Britain's Parliament.

First Act of 1765

The first became law on 24 March 1765, and provided that Britain would house its soldiers in America first in barracks and public houses, as by the Mutiny Act of 1765, but if its soldiers outnumbered the housing available, would quarter them "in inns, livery stables, ale houses, victuallinghouses, and the houses of sellers of wine [...] and houses of persons selling of rum, brandy, strong water, cyder or metheglin", and if numbers required in "uninhabited houses, outhouses, barns, or other buildings", requiring any inhabitants (or in their absence, public officials) to provide them with food and alcohol, and providing for fire, candles, vinegar, salt, bedding, and utensils for the soldiers "without paying any thing for the same".

Act of 1774

The second Quartering Act, established 2 June 1774, was one of the measures (variously called the Intolerable Acts, the Punitive Acts or the Coercive Acts) that were designed to secure Britain's jurisdiction over her American dominions, and was similar in substance to the Quartering Act of 1765.

Modern relevance

Both Acts lead directly to the Third Amendment to the United States Constitution, which expressly prohibited the United States Army from doing the same without consent of the owner of the house. The passage of time has largely invalidated both. The Quartering Act has been invalidated by the recognition of the independence of the United States and advancements in warfare have rendered the 3rd amendment the least cited and fought over in unconstitutionality cases.

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