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American Revolution. Becker US History. Lexington and Concord. Colonies store up weapons in Concord English get word of these stockpiles English march on Concord, MA to seize (Paul Revere’s Ride) Pass through Lexington, militia blocks road English order militia to disperse

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American Revolution

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American revolution

American Revolution


US History

Lexington and concord

Lexington and Concord

  • Colonies store up weapons in Concord

  • English get word of these stockpiles

  • English march on Concord, MA to seize

  • (Paul Revere’s Ride)

  • Pass through Lexington, militia blocks road

  • English order militia to disperse

  • Someone fires, confusion follows, militia run

  • Most weapons saved

  • English harassed all the way back to Boston

2 nd continental congress

2nd Continental Congress

  • Convenes on May 10, 1775

  • Direct Response to Lexington/Concord

  • Decision to raise army/navy

  • Appointment of George Washington

  • Olive Branch Petition

    • Directly addresses King George

    • Blames Parliament for colonial problems

    • Does have supporters in Parliament

Bunker hill breed s hill

Bunker Hill/Breed’s Hill

  • June 1775, British surrounded in Boston

  • Running low on supplies, try to break out

  • Attack 20K militia entrenched on Breed’s Hill

  • Frontal assault up a hill- clear disadvantage

  • 3 attacks, militia defend but low on ammo

  • Militia retreat, British take the hill: a draw

  • British lose 1000 casualties, militia lose 400

  • Observer mistakenly labels hill “Bunker Hill”

Preparing for war

Preparing for War

  • After Bunker Hill, King rejects Olive Branch Petition

  • Hessian mercenaries hired to crush violence

  • May 1775 Ethan Allen and Green Mountain Boys capture Fort Ticonderoga

  • October 1775 colonists launch invasion of Canada

    • Expected the French-Canadians to support

    • French in Canada disliked Anti-Catholic colonists

  • Montreal captured, Arnold’s attack on Quebec fails

  • Canadian invasion ends a failure

  • British burn Norfolk, but forced to pull out of Boston

American ideals

American Ideals

  • Widespread disunity in 1775: 30/30/30%

  • Thomas Paine publishes Common Sense

    • Roman concept of republic: senators, governors

    • Emphasis on “consent of the governed”

    • Logic: Small group of English nobles should not control the entire American continent

  • Paine is an English commoner

    • Appeals to average American colonist

    • Uses simple Biblical allusions: strikes a chord

American revolution

“Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one.”

Declaration of independence

Declaration of Independence

  • 1776 2nd Cont Congress votes to leave England

  • Thomas Jefferson asked to write document

    • Quiet, poor speaker, but an eloquent writer

    • Borrows heavily from John Locke: natural rights

    • Locke: Life, liberty, property

    • Jefferson: Life, liberty, pursuit of happiness

  • “All men are created equal”

    • Who is he talking about?

  • Document listed grievances of colonies

  • Explained logic for a break with England

  • Signed and presented on July 4, 1776

Battle of long island

Battle of Long Island

  • British have set up their headquarters in NY

  • Troops and supplies land on Long Island

  • Washington believes he can’t win long war

  • Hopes for quick victory over British at LI

  • August 1776 attacks, horribly defeated

  • Continentals lose 1400, British lose 375

  • Battle shows Washington’s inexperience

Battle of trenton

Battle of Trenton

  • Winter 1776: Continental enlistments expire

  • Washington needs victory to get reenlistees

  • Attacks Trenton, NJ night of December 24

    • Hessians, not English troops: mercenaries

    • Germans: Partying it up on Xmas Eve

  • Washington crosses Delaware River, attacks

  • Complete surprise, the victory Wash. Needed

  • British (Hessians) lose 1200, US loses 4/6

British strategy

British Strategy

  • Burgoyne is appointed British commander

    • Decides to cut off New England from other colonies

  • 3-Prong attack

    • Burgoyne from north, down St. Lawrence River

    • Howe from east (NY), up Hudson River

    • St. Ledger from east, from Ohio River Valley

  • Arnold stops Burgoyne at Lake Champlain

  • Howe attacks Philadelphia before the Hudson

  • St. Ledger also delayed in reaching Hudson

Battle of saratoga

Battle of Saratoga

  • 1777 British Burgoyne meets US Gates

    • Brits expecting reinforcements: Howe, St. Ledger

    • Numerous engagements, British surrounded

    • Burgoyne runs out of supplies- finally surrenders

  • Americans capture 5800 British troops

  • French observers at Saratoga are watching

  • Saratoga is KEY TURNING POINT in war

  • French observers have been watching

  • Convinces France US can win vs England

  • 1778 Treaty of Alliance signed with France

Why france

Why France?

  • Traditional English/French hatred, revenge

  • After Saratoga, Parliament offers home rule

  • France has already been selling US supplies

    • British offer pushes Louis XVI’s hand, forces action

    • If Britain regains control, France could lose possessions

  • 1778 Treaty of Alliance offers supplies, military, and recognition of American independence

    • Americans are reluctant but have few choices

    • French are Catholics, traditional enemies

  • Britain is more immediate threat

Valley forge

Valley Forge

  • Saratoga was KEY- but few realize it then

  • 1777 Washington goes into winter quarters

  • Poor shelter, little food, no shoes/uniforms

  • 3000 die, 1000+ desert during the winter

  • Baron von Steuben- strict Prussian officer

  • Teaches discipline, unity, fighting skills

  • Continentals leaves Valley Forge a confident and capable Army

A traitor in our midst

A Traitor in Our Midst

  • Benedict Arnold is classic American entrepreneur

  • 1780 French Rochambeau arrives

  • Arnold resents Washington’s reliance on French

    • Arnold is passed over for promotion 3 separate times

    • Arnold feels responsible for Saratoga

    • Does not feel appreciated: looks elsewhere

  • Major Andre offers Arnold money, commision

    • In exchange, Arnold agrees to turn over West Point

    • Word gets out, Arnold forced to flee

  • Dies a man without a country: no one wants him

Native americans

Native Americans

  • 1777 sees rise in Indian involvement

  • Majority of tribes support Britain

    • Geopolitics 101: who’s your closest enemy?

    • Bacon’s Rebellion, Proclamation of 1763, etc.

  • Mohawks and Chief Joseph Brant in NY/PA

  • Iroquois Confederacy also sides with British

  • Disastrous results after the war for Indians

  • Treaty of Fort Stanwix leaves Iroquois landless

  • All tribes treated harshly for wartime alliances

Battle of yorktown

Battle of Yorktown

  • 1781 British Cornwallis entrenches in VA

    • Gates has been playing a cautious game of cat/mouse

    • Frustrated Washington is now in pursuit from NY

  • Conrwalliswaiting for Royal Navy to evacuate him

  • Washington and Rochambeau race to trap

    • Washington from North, Rochambeau from South

  • Admiral de Grasse traps by sea with French fleet

    • Lasts 1 month, then Cornwallis out of supplies

    • British Royal Navy is dealing with world war now

    • French, Spanish, Dutch, and Russians allied vs. England

  • October 1781 Cornwallis surrenders 8000 men

    • Attempt to save face and surrender to French

    • Battle effectively ends American Revolution

1783 treaty of paris

1783 Treaty of Paris

  • Jay, Adams, and Franklin travel to Paris

  • Britain is willing to negotiate with world against her

    • Britain recognizes American independence

    • Britain will remove all troops from US soil

    • Border between colonies, Canada/Spanish Florida set

    • Debts owed British citizens will be paid

    • Debts owed American citizens will be paid

    • Seized property will be returned to loyalists

    • US is given fishing rights off Newfoundland/Nova Scotia

    • POWs are returned to their countries

  • Americans are in right place at the right time

Loyalists after the war

Loyalists After the War

  • Voices of reason in idealistic time

  • After the war, found themselves unwelcome

  • Property often not returned, businesses fail

  • Many relocate to Canada, W. Indies, or England

  • Most blacks abandoned by British after the war

  • Promises of freedom replaced by punishment

  • Freed slaves often returned to life of slavery

  • Native Americans lose land, rights

Ideological change

Ideological Change

  • Revolutionary War vs. American Revolution

  • Religious Change

    • Anglican Church replaced by Episcopal Church

    • Congregational Church remains state church in NE

  • Slavery issue comes to define America

    • Quakers are first anti-slavery group

    • 1st Great Awakening raised moral objections to slavery

    • 1st Continental Congress tried to abolish slavery

  • Rights/responsibilities for women

    • “Republican Motherhood”

    • Responsibility of mothers to raise good citizen-sons

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