7th Grade Study Guide – Chapters 5-6 (The Spirit of Independence/The American Revolution)

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7th Grade Study Guide – Chapters 5-6 (The Spirit of Independence/The American Revolution)


General Burgoyne

British general defeated at the Battle of Saratoga. Turning point of war. French now encouraged to assist the Americans.

Nathaniel Greene

Replaced Gates as leader of the Continental forces. Split his army into two. Chased the British (Cornwallis) out of the Carolinas up to Yorktown, Virginia.


German soldiers who fought for Britain

General Howe (British)

Made some terrible mistakes…like staying too long in Philadelphia and not pursuing Washington into New Jersey

Thomas Jeffersonhttp://www.toriesfightingfortheking.com/loyalist%20corps_htm_m1286355e.png

Wrote most of the Declaration of Independence


American colonists who sided with the British

Sons of Liberty

Sam Adams, John Hancock, and Paul Revere were members – a secret group that organized attacks on the British

Thomas Paine

His pamphlet, Common Sense, convinced many colonists to support independence

Francis Marion

Patriot leader who defeated the British in the South. Known as the “Swamp Fox” – hit and run style.


American colonists who supported independence and war against England. They made statements such as “…give me liberty or give me death.”

Treaty of Paris

Americans and British work out a treaty in Paris after the war is ended. Signed in September 1783, Great Britain recognized the United States as an independent nation.

Baron Von Steuben

George Washington hired this German general to train Colonial troops at Valley Forge.

George Washingtonhttps://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/b/b6/gilbert_stuart_williamstown_portrait_of_george_washington.jpg

General of the Continental Army…will become the first President of the United States

Women in the war

Women helped plant crops, make war supplies and clothing. Many were nurses.

Yorktown, Virginia

Cornwallis is surrounded by American ground forces as well as Rochambeau’s French infantry. Cornwallis surrenders to George Washington – ends the war October 1781.

African Americans and Native Americans

Both groups helped both the British and colonists.

Causes of Tensionhttps://encrypted-tbn3.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:and9gcqmq6lhyvd5sgbrpxi5rquva5wh31loukmuapa85--blm1sknpb

Boston Massacre

Redcoats fire into crowd, killing some…but are eventually found not guilty.

Boston Tea Party


Colonists dressed up like Indians and threw British goods into the harbor. They were protesting the tax on tea.

French and Indian War

According to the English, this conflict between the French and English was the reason for increasing Colonial taxes.

Intolerable Acts

Designed to punish Massachusetts for violating previous acts –for example, the Boston harbor was closed.

Proclamation of 1763http://mitchell150.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/screen-shot-2014-07-21-at-10.48.19-pm.png

Colonists were forbidden to settle west of Appalachian Mountains.

Quartering Act

Colonists forced to “house” British soldiers…a particularly hated act

Stamp Act

After this act (which taxed printed goods), colonists demanded “no taxation without representation.”

Sugar Act

Actually lowered the tax on molasses…encouraging colonists to buy more

Townshend Acts

Tax placed on essential items – tea, glass, lead…protests and boycotts result

Writs of Assistance

Allowed the British to search without warrants or probable cause

The American Revolution

  • The American colonists, especially Bostonians, showed their opposition to the British taxation and trade restrictions of the 1760s mainly by boycotting products from Great Britain.

  • The colonists felt restricted by laws/acts passed by the British government such as the Proclamation of 1763, the Navigation Laws, the Stamp Act, and the Townshend Acts.

  • The colonists felt they didn’t enough of a voice in their own government.http://media.web.britannica.com/eb-media/48/101048-004-9d28517e.gif

  • The American Revolution begins with the battles at Lexington and Concord. At Lexington, the British win and the colonists flee. Next, at Concord, the colonists win, and the British are driven back to Boston.

Strengths and Weaknesses of both sides

America (colonists)

Great Britain



  • Ambush/guerilla style warfare

  • Fighting on their own ground

  • Greater motivation

  • George Washington – a great leader

  • France on their side

*Saratoga_(the_British_were_defeated)'>France began supporting America after the Battle at Saratoga (the British were defeated)

  • Powerful army (well-trained) and navy

  • Wealthy empire

  • Larger population



  • Inexperienced soldiers

  • No regular army/weak navy

  • Timeline of Events (in chronological order)

    • French and Indian War► passage of Stamp Act► Battle of Saratoga► Battle of Yorktown

  • Even though the American soldiers ran out of ammunition and were defeated by the British at the Battle of Bunker Hill, the Americans showed the British that they would not be intimidated and could not be easily defeated.

  • Battle at Trenton, NJ – George Washington orders a surprise attack on the British/Hessians at Trenton. Hessians were still drunk from Christmas festivities – not good.

  • Saratoga (New York) – Turning point of war. British General Burgoyne is defeated. French decide to join with the Americans.

  • Yorktown, Virginia – War is won by the Americans as Cornwallis is defeated.

  • Treaty of Paris conditions:

    • Share fishing rights with the British in the North Atlantic

    • America gains its independence

    • Loyalists will be treated fairly by the American government

  • The Declaration of Independence states that people have the right to alter or abolish a government if that government violates peoples’ natural rights. If these rights are not given, the people can rebel.http://www.founding.com/repository/imglib/20070906_declaration572f7e4b5.gif

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