18 and 19th century in the United States of America

  • The original 13 colonies

    The original 13 colonies
    The last English colony to be founded in
    North America was Georgia, settled in 1733.
    By the year 1733 the English owned thirteen separate
    colonies along the Atlantic coast of North America.
    In the far north was the New England group, centered on Massachusetts.
    The nearest colonies to the south of New England
    were called the Middle Colonies. The biggest were
    New York and Pennsylvania.
    The Southern Colonies of Virginia, the Carolinas
    and Georgia formed the third group.
  • Period: to

    The French and Indian War - The Seven Years War

    After several wars earlier in the eighteenth century, in 1756 Britain and France began fighting the Seven Years War. This is known to Americans as the French and Indian War.
    The war was ended by the Peace of Paris, which was signed in 1763. France gave up its claim to Canada and to all of North America east of the Mississippi River.
  • Pontiac’s War

    Pontiac’s War
    The Native American tribes in the Ohio River Valley didn’t appreciate British victory in the French and Indian War. They didn’t like the fact that the British colonists and soldiers stayed on in the Valley. This eventually led to a new war by a Native American chief named Pontiac.
    The war started and ended in 1763. There were a lot of casualties in both sides. In the end, both sides agreed to resolve the matter through negotiations and the Native Americans left the lands claimed by the British.
  • Stamp Act

    Stamp Act
    Like the Sugar Act, the Stamp Act was imposed to provide increased revenues to meet the costs of defending the enlarged British Empire. It was the first British parliamentary attempt to raise revenue through direct taxation on a wide variety of colonial transactions, newspaper advertisements, ships’ bills of lading, etc. Enraged colonists nullified the Stamp Act through outright refusal to use the stamps as well as by riots, stamp burning, and intimidation of colonial stamp distributors.
  • Boston Massacre

    Boston Massacre
    In Boston, a small British army detachment that was threatened by mob harassment opened fire and killed five people, an incident soon known as the Boston Massacre. The soldiers were charged with murder and were given a civilian trial, in which John Adams conducted a successful defense.
  • Boston Tea Party

    Boston Tea Party
    Protesting both a tax on tea (taxation without representation) and the perceived monopoly of the East India Company, a party of Bostonians thinly disguised as Mohawk people boarded ships at anchor and dumped some £10,000 worth of tea into the harbor, an event popularly known as the Boston Tea Party.
  • Intolerable Acts

    Intolerable Acts
    In retaliation for colonial resistance to British rule during the winter of 1773–74, the British Parliament enacted four measures that became known as the Intolerable (or Coercive) Acts: the Boston Port Act, Massachusetts Government Act, Administration of Justice Act, and Quartering Act. Rather than intimidating Massachusetts and isolating it from the other colonies, the oppressive acts became the justification for convening the First Continental Congress later in 1774.
  • First Continental Congress

    First Continental Congress
    This was a meeting of the delegates from the Thirteen Colonies (except Georgia) . The meeting was convened to discuss the Intolerable Acts passed by the British Parliament.
    It agreed on a set of rights and grievances which were shared with the King George III through a petition. The Congress also discussed the establishment of local militias for the colonies. It was decided that if the King didn’t respond to their petition, a second Continental Congress would take place the next year.
  • The Battles of Lexington and Concord

    The Battles of Lexington and Concord
    These battles signalled the start of the American Revolutionary war on April 19, 1775. The British Army set out from Boston to capture rebel leaders Samuel Adams and John Hancock in Lexington as well as to destroy the Americans store of weapons and ammunition in Concord. The colonists were warned however that the British Army was approaching. Sam Adams and John Hancock were able to escape and the local militia was able to hide much of their ammunition and weapons.
  • Second Continental Congress

    Second Continental Congress
    The Second Continental Congress took place in 1775. In this congress, the delegates from 13 colonies discussed the ongoing American Revolution. The Congress effectively became the de facto government of the colonies at war. It determined the strategy of the war as well as the issue of raising and paying armies, and establishing treaties with others on behalf of the colonies.
  • Declaration of Independence is adopted

    Declaration of Independence is adopted
    After the Congress recommended that colonies form their own governments, the Declaration of Independence was written by Thomas Jefferson and revised in committee.
    This declaration said that the 13 American colonies were no longer under British rule and considered themselves as independent entities.
    It officially named the colonies “The United States of America”. It set the basis for a new form of government.
  • France and the United States form an alliance

    France and the United States form an alliance
    The French had secretly furnished financial and material aid to the Americans since 1776, but with the signing in Paris of the Treaty of Amity and Commerce and the Treaty of Alliance, the Franco-American alliance was formalised. France began preparing fleets and armies to enter the fight but did not formally declare war on Britain until June 1778.
  • Articles of Confederation ratified

    Articles of Confederation ratified
    The Articles of Confederation, a plan of government organisation that served as a bridge between the initial government by the Continental Congress and the federal government provided under the U.S. Constitution of 1787, were written in 1776–77 and adopted by the Congress on November 15, 1777. However, the articles were not fully ratified by the states until March 1, 1781
  • Siege of Yorktown

    Siege of Yorktown
    After winning a costly victory at Guilford Courthouse, North Carolina, on March 15, 1781, Lord Cornwallis entered Virginia to join other British forces there, setting up a base at Yorktown. Washington’s army and a force under the French Count de Rochambeau placed Yorktown under siege, and Cornwallis surrendered his army of more than 7,000 men on October 19, 1781.
  • Treaty of Paris ends the American War of Independence

    Treaty of Paris ends the American War of Independence
    With the Surrender at Yorktown, the British realised that they could no longer win the war. So they decided to sue for peace. These efforts led to the Treaty of Paris signed in 1783. According to this treaty, Great Britain officially accepted its defeat and recognised the independence of the United States of America. The treaty also stated that the western boundary of the USA was the Mississippi River, although the newly born nation soon expanded beyond this boundary.
  • Constitution of the United States is composed

    Constitution of the United States is composed
    The congress asked for a Constitutional Convention to be held. It was led by Washington and all states (except Rhode Island) were present. The original purpose was to revise the Articles of Confederation. After some debates, they issued the Constitution of the United States, which proposed a new system of government: a federal government. The power to rule is shared between a central power and local governments. It was signed on September 17, 1787.
  • Bill of Rights

    Bill of Rights
    Some of the states didn’t like the new constitution. They wanted to change it and agreed to vote in its favour only if the constitution would be amended soon after. These amendments took place in 1791. They were collectively known as the Bill of Rights and comprised of a total of 10 amendments. These amendments were mainly concerned with basic rights of U.S. citizens such as the right to assembly, freedom of religion, freedom of speech and legal rights.
  • The White House

    The White House
    The construction of the White House began in the 1790s. It was until 1800 that an American President came to live in it for the first time. Although it was still unfinished at the time, President John Adams and his wife Abigail Adams took up residence in the White House. Thus began the long tradition of White House becoming the seat of U.S. presidents.
  • Thomas Jefferson becomes the 3rd President of USA

    Thomas Jefferson becomes the 3rd President of USA
    Thomas Jefferson was one of the most famous Founding Fathers of USA. He was the author of the Declaration of Independence which first spoke of an independent country for the American states. In 1801, Thomas Jefferson became the 3rd President of United States. He was a staunch support of democracy and took many steps to strengthen it during his time as president.
  • The Louisiana Purchase

    The Louisiana Purchase
    The Louisiana Territory was a large piece of land in the centre of modern-day USA. The USA originally wanted to buy the New Orleans port located at the mouth of the Mississippi River on the Gulf of Mexico. The port was under the control of the French who also owned the Louisiana Territory. France agreed to sell not just the port but the entire Territory. USA paid $15 million as a part of the deal. With the new Louisiana Territory, the overall size of USA effectively doubled.
  • The Lewis and Clark Expedition begins

    The Lewis and Clark Expedition begins
    Although USA had purchase the Louisiana Territory, no one knew how the land was or if there were any roads or other infrastructure. So President Thomas Jefferson decided to send an expedition into the lands west of the Mississippi river. This expedition became known as Lewis and Clark Expedition. It was so named because it was led by Captain Meriwether Lewis and Lieutenant William Clark. The expedition would take more than a year to complete.
  • Louisiana becomes the 18th state of USA

    Since the Louisiana Purchase, the population of the Louisiana Territory had rapidly increased as more and more settlers from the eastern states went there. By 1812, the population was large enough so that a new state was established west of the Mississippi River. This became known as the state of Louisiana. It became the first state to be established west of the Mississippi River and became the original boundaries of the USA.
  • The Oregon Trail is established

    The Oregon Trail is established
    In the 1830, American settlers started travelling to the Oregon Territory. This was a very long journey and the route that was popularly used for making the journey famously became known as the Oregon Trail. The trail was first followed and established by settlers in 1830. It ran for around 2,000 miles, starting in Missouri and culminating in Oregon.
  • Indian Removal Act is passed

    Indian Removal Act is passed
    In 1830, the Indian Removal Act was signed into law by President Andrew Jackson. This law gave him the power to relocate Indian tribes living east of Mississippi river to the western territories.
  • The Trail of Tears

    The Trail of Tears
    In 1838 and 1839, as part of Andrew Jackson's Indian removal policy, the Cherokee nation was forced to give up its lands east of the Mississippi River and to migrate to an area in present-day Oklahoma. The Cherokee people called this journey the "Trail of Tears," because of its devastating effects. The migrants faced hunger, disease, and exhaustion on the forced march. Over 4,000 out of 15,000 of the Cherokees died.
  • Mexican-American War begins

    Mexican-American War begins
    In 1846, most of the western portions of America such as Utah, New Mexico, Arizona and Nevada were still a part of Mexico. U.S. President James K. Polk wanted to take these lands and make them a part of USA. So he moved American soldiers in a border area of Mexico. Mexico responded by attacking these soldiers. USA then declared war, defeated the Mexican army in a number of battles, and occupied one-third of Mexico. By 1847, US forces had captured Mexico City, the heart of the Mexican Republic.
  • The Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo is signed

    The Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo is signed
    The Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo marked the end of the Mexican-American War. According to this treaty, Mexico gave up all its land possessions north of the Rio Grande River, significantly increasing the size of USA. The new land later became the states of Wyoming, Utah, Nevada, New Mexico, California, Arizona and Colorado.
  • Confederate States of American break away from the Union

    Confederate States of American break away from the Union
    The difference between the slave and free states deepened. By 1861, the free states were at one side and known as the Union. At the other side were the slave states which were known as the Confederacy. War began between the two sides on April 12, 1861. This war would be one of the bloodiest wars in America.
  • Abraham Lincoln becomes the President

    Abraham Lincoln becomes the President
    By 1860, there was a very strong disagreement between the slave and free states. The slave states in the south supported slavery and opposed Abraham Lincoln was who opposed to slavery. Free states in the north support Abraham Lincoln and opposed slavery. In the 1860 Presidential Elections, Abraham Lincoln was elected as the President of the United States. The slave states didn’t like the outcome, so many of them started to leave the Union and declare independence.
  • The First Battle is Fought

    The First Battle is Fought
    The First Battle of Bull Run was the first major battle in the American Civil War. It was fought in July, 1861. Nearly 35,000 Union troops fought with 20,000 Confederate soldiers. The Confederate army was able to defeat the Union troops who retreated back to Washington D.C. The battle was fought near a small river called the Bull Run.
  • Battle of Gettysburg takes place

    Battle of Gettysburg takes place
    The Confederate army under General Robert E. Lee had just secured a major victory. This army ran into the Union’s Army of the Potomac on its way to Pennsylvania. This resulted in the Battle of Gettysburg. The battle was hard fought and both sides suffered heavy losses. The Union army suffered around 23,000 casualties while the Confederates suffered around 25,000 casualties. The Confederates failed to break through the lines of the Union army and had to retreat, resulting in a Union victory.
  • Abraham Lincoln delivers the Gettysburg Address

    Abraham Lincoln delivers the Gettysburg Address
    A few months after the Battle of Gettysburg, a dedication ceremony was held in honor of the soldiers who fought at the battle. At this ceremony, President Abraham Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address which has since become the best-known speech in the history of USA. In this speech, Lincoln spoke about the principles of equality and humanity. He also use the famous phrases – the government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.
  • Sherman’s March to the Sea takes place

    Sherman’s March to the Sea takes place
    In 1864, the Confederate stronghold of Atlanta was captured by Union forces under General Sherman. Sherman then took the Union army on a march from Atlanta to Savannah, Georgia. This was a 285 mile march and during the march, the Union army burned crops, fields, barns and factories in their path. This was meant to devastate the economy of the south and force the Confederacy to end the war.
    November 15 – December 21
  • Civil War Ends

    Civil War Ends
    By April, 1865, most of the Confederate armies had been decisively defeated. General Robert E. Lee still commanded one of the last major Confederate armies. This army was completely surrounded by the Union army under Ulysses S. Grant on April 9, 1865. Lee saw that he had no choice and surrendered his army. This effectively brought the Civil War to an end with the victory of the Union forces.
  • President Abraham Lincoln is assassinated

    President Abraham Lincoln is assassinated
    On April 9, 1965, the last major Confederate army surrendered. This meant a victory for the Union under the leadership of the President Abraham Lincoln. Only 5 days later, the President was assassinated by John Wilkes Booth who sympathized with the Confederacy. Booth assassinated Abraham Lincoln at Ford’s Theatre in Washington D.C. He then fled but was later cornered in a barn and shot by a Union soldier.
  • Slavery is outlawed in USA

    Slavery is outlawed in USA
    In December, 1865, the US Congress passed the Thirteen Amendment. This amendment made slavery illegal in all the territories of USA as well as the territories where US would have jurisdiction. The text of the amendment stated, ‘Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for a crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction’. 1867 – USA purchases Alaska from Russia
  • USA purchases Alaska from Russia

    USA purchases Alaska from Russia
    In the first half of the 19th century, Alaska had a very small population. Russia had an interest in the region. Russian explorers and settlers had arrived at Alaska and although they found natural resources in the region, they couldn’t expand their settlements. On the other side, USA also had its eyes on Alaska and wanted to add the region to the US borders. So in 1867, the two sides reached a deal. USA paid Russia a sum of $7.2 million and effectively became the owner of the Alaska region.