Two Penny Act

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TWO PENNY ACT, enacted in 1755 by the Virginia assembly in anticipation of a low-yielding tobacco crop, permitted payment of obligations due in tobacco over a ten-month period at a commutation rate of two pence per pound. In 1758 the assembly passed a similar act of one year's duration. The Anglican clergy, whose salaries were fixed in terms of tobacco, objected to the measure. They secured a royal disallowance of the act and sought to collect the difference between two pence and the market price. The suits to recover back salaries, known as the "parson's cause," proved unsuccessful.


Isaac, Rhys. The Transformation of Virginia, 1740–1790. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1982; New York: Norton, 1988.

Wesley FrankCravan/s. b.

See alsoParson's Cause ; Royal Disallowance .