American Revolutionary War

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American Revolutionary War

  1. Second Continental Congress

  • All 13 colonies represented

  • George Washington Commander of the Continental Army.

  • Issue paper money, created army and navy

    • Pledge loyalty to crown; sought to restore peace

    • Appealed to George III to intercede with Parliament to reconsider the “Intolerable Acts”

  1. British Military Strengths

  • Large population

  • Professional army

  • Help in the New World

II. British Military Weaknesses

  • Enormous distance from England to the Colonies

  • America too large a region to effectively occupy (gained port cities mostly)

  • King George & Lord North inadequate

III. American Military Strengths

  • Economic aid from France; later military aid

  • Moral advantage from belief in a just cause

  • Tiny American navy

IV. American Military Weaknesses

  • Badly organized and lacked unity at first

  • Economic difficulties

  • Military challenges

    • supplies inadequate esp. firearms and gunpowder

    • Morale low

  • 40% neutral

V. The War: New England

  • Ft Ticonderoga (May 1775)

  • Bunker Hill (Breed’s Hill) June 1775

    • Viewed as American victory b/c of Brit loses

    • King proclaims colonists are rebels

VI. Thomas Paine

  • Wrote Common Sense (effective propanganda)

  • Main ideas:

    • Stripped kingship of justification. King the "Royal Brute of Great Britain“

    • Europe, not England, is the mother country

    • America had a moral obligation to the world to set up an independent, democratic republic

  • Persuaded ordinary folk to sever ties w/ G.B

VII. Declaration of Independence

    • Congress persuaded to vote for b/c:

  • Three major parts:

    • Preamble (heavily influenced by John Locke)

      • Stated rights of colonists to break away if natural rights were not protected: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness (property)

      • Stated "all men are created equal”

    • Formal declaration of independence

VIII. War: The Middle

  • Battle of Trenton (Dec. 1776)

    • G.W crossed ice-clogged Delaware River

IX. The War: New England

  • Battle of Saratoga (Oct. 1777)

  • Washington retired to Valley Forge for winter

X. French Alliance

  • Revolution turned into a world war that stretched Britain’s resources.

    • 1779 Spain and Holland war with Britain

    • 1780 Russian’s Armed Neutrality

XI. The War: The South

  • GB now focus on taking the South

  • Francis "Swamp Fox" Marion

    • Marion's Brigade in 1780; they terrorized the British Army in South Carolina and Georgia with a series of hit and run raids

  • Battle of Yorktown

    • French Admiral de Grasse blockaded Chesapeake Bay; British ships unable to enter.

    • Oct. 19, 1781, General Cornwallis surrendered entire force of 7,000 men

    • War continued one more year (especial

XII. Loyalist (Tories) Dilemma Last Major Battle

  • 1/5 loyal to the king

  • Least numerous in New England

  • Patriots viewed them as traitors

XIII. Minorities

    • Natives

      • In 1784, the Iroquois leader Joseph Brant “Monster Brant” signed

        • Treaty of Fort Stanwix, 1st treaty between the U.S. and natives

          • Natives ceded most of their land.

            • Even in wartime, pioneers moved west

      • Kept economy afloat; fought in battle

        • Molly Pitcher, Sybil Ludington, Deborah Sampson

    • Many blacks fought with the Brits

XIV. Treaty of Paris

    • Britain formally recognized US independence

    • Retain a share in North Atlantic fisheries

    • Pay back debts to British creditors.

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