Surrender of lord cornwallis canvas john laurens 1820

American Revolution

  • John Locke's Social Contract

    After the Olive Branch Petition, public opinion began to shift. The shift in public opinion occurred because of John Locke. He believed that people have rights to life, liberty, & property. He believed every society is based on an agreement where the people consent to choose & obey a government if it guards their rights. If the government violates by taking away or interfering, people have the right to resist & overthrow the govt.
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    French & Indian War

    As the French empire in North America expanded, colliding with the growing British empire. During the end of the 17th with the first half of the 18th centuries, France and Great Britain had fought three inconclusive wars. Each war had begun in Europe but spread to their overseas colonies. In 1754, after six rather peaceful years, the French–British conflict reignited. This conflict is known as the French and Indian War.
  • Writs of Assistance

    In 1761, Sir Francis Bernard (the royal governor of Massachusetts) authorized the use of The Writs of Assistance; a search warrant that allowed British customs to search any ship or building believed to have smuggled goods. Because many merchants worked out of their residences, the Writs enabled British officials to enter and search colonial homes whether there was evidence of smuggling or not. The Boston merchants were infuriated.
  • Treaty of Paris

    The war officially ended in 1763 with the signing of the Treaty of Paris. Great Britain claimed Canada and all of North America east of the Mississippi River. Britain also took Florida from Spain, which had allied itself with France. The treaty allowed Spain to keep its lands west of the Mississippi as well as New Orleans, which it had gained from France in 1762. France retained control of only a few islands and small colonies near Newfoundland, in the West Indies, and elsewhere.
  • Proclamation act of 1763

    The Proclamation of 1763 established a Proclamation Line along the Appalachians in which the colonists were not allowed to cross . However, the colonists ignored the proclamation and continued to stream onto Native American lands because they were eager to expand out west.
  • Sugar Act & colonists response

    In 1764, Grenville prompted Parliament to enact a law known as the Sugar Act. The Sugar Act did three things. It split taxes on
    foreign-made molasses in half, in the hopes that colonists would pay a lower tax rather than risk arrest by smuggling. It placed
    taxes on certain imports that had not been taxed before.
    Most important, it stated that colonists accused of violating the act would be tried in a vice-admiralty court rather
    than a colonial court.
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    Stamp Act & Colonists response / Sons of Liberty & Samuel Adams

    In 1765, Parliament passed the Stamp Act. The act
    enforced a tax on documents & printed items like wills, newspapers, & playing cards. Stamps were placed on items to prove that the tax had been paid. In May, the colonists challenged the law. Merchants organized the resistance group The Sons of Liberty to challenge the law. In October, merchants in New York, Boston, & Philadelphia agreed to boycott goods until the Act was repealed. The boycott worked, with Parliament repealing the act in 1766.
  • Declaratory Act

    On the same day that the stamp act was repealed, Parliament passed the Declaratory Act, which affirmed Parliament’s right “to bind the colonies and people of America in all cases whatsoever.”
  • Townshend Acts & colonists response

    in 1767, Parliament passed the Townshend Acts, named after Charles Townshend, the government minister. The Townshend Acts taxed goods that were imported into the colony from Britain, such as lead, glass, paint, and paper. The Acts also enforced a tax on tea, which was the most popular drink in the colonies.
  • Boston Massacre

    In March 1770, a mob gathered in front of the Boston Customs House and taunted British soldiers standing guard. Shots were fired & five colonists, including Crispus Attucks, were killed or mortally wounded. Colonial leaders quickly named the confrontation the Boston Massacre.
  • Tea Act

    In 1773, Lord North arranged the Tea Act to save British East India Company from bankruptcy. The act allowed the company the right to sell tea to colonies free of taxes that colonial tea sellers had to pay. This action would've cut colonial merchants out of the tea trade by East India Company selling its tea to consumers for less.
  • Boston Tea Party

    Lord North hoped that colonists would buy the cheaper British East India tea; however, they instead protested. On the evening of December 16, 1773, a group of Boston rebels disguised as Native Americans, took action against British tea ships, dumping 18,000 pounds of East India Company’s tea into Boston harbor. This event will later be known as the Boston Tea Party,
  • Intolerable Acts

    King George III pressed Parliament to act, so Parliament responded by passing a series of measures named the Intolerable Acts. One law shut down Boston harbor. Another, the Quartering Act, authorized commanders to house soldiers in private homes and other buildings. In addition to these measures, General Thomas Gage, was appointed the new governor of Massachusetts. To keep
    peace, he placed Boston under martial law.
  • First Continental Congress meets

    In response to Britain, the committees of correspondence assembled the First Continental Congress. In September 1774,
    delegates met in Philadelphia and came up with a declaration of rights. They defended the colonies’ right to run their own affairs and stated that if the British used force against the colonies, the colonies could fight back.
  • Minutemen

    After the First Continental Congress met, colonists in eastern New England towns upgraded military preparations. Minutemen—civilian soldiers who pledged to fight against the British—secretly stocked firearms and gunpowder. However, General Thomas Gage soon learned about the Minutemen so In the spring of 1775, he ordered troops to march from Boston to nearby Concord, Massachusetts, to seize illegal weapons.
  • Battle of Concord

    The British marched on to Concord, where they found an empty arsenal. the soldiers lined up to march back to Boston, but the march quickly became a slaughter. Between 3,000 and 4,000 minutemen had assembled by now, and fired on the marching troops behind stone walls and trees. British soldiers fell by the dozen. The remaining British soldiers got back to Boston that night. Colonists had become enemies of Britain and now held Boston and its encampment of British troops under siege.
  • Second Continental Congress / Continental Army

    In May 1775, colonial leaders called the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia to debate their next move. The loyalties that divided colonists sparked endless debates at the Second Continental Congress. Some called for independence, while others, reconciliation with Britain. Despite their differences, the Congress agreed to recognize the colonial militia as the Continental Army and set George Washington as its commander.
  • The Olive Branch Petition

    In July 1775, Congress sent the king the Olive Branch Petition, urging that Great Britain & the colonies return to their “former harmony”. King George blatantly rejected the petition, issuing a proclamation stating that the colonies were rebellious and urged Parliament to order a naval blockade to isolate a line of ships meant for the American coast.
  • Battle of Lexington

    The Battle of Lexington was the first battle of the Revolutionary War, lasting only 15 minutes.
  • Battle of Bunker Hill

    Up in Boston, general Thomas Gage decided to strike at militiamen on Breed’s Hill. On June 17, 1775, Gage sent approximately 2,500 British soldiers up the hill. The colonists held fire until the last minute and then began to mow down the redcoats before finally retreating. By the time the smoke cleared, the colonists had lost 450 men, while the British had suffered over 1,000 casualties. The Battle of Bunker Hill would prove to be the deadliest battle of the war.
  • Loyalists & Patriots

    As the war began, Americans found themselves on different sides of the conflict. Loyalists opposed independence and remained loyal to the British king while Patriots supported independence.
  • Publication of Common Sense

    Thomas Paine’s widely read 50-page pamphlet Common Sense helped to overcome many colonists’ doubts about separating from Britain.
  • Declaration of Independence

    By 1776, the Continental Congress decided to urge each colony to form its own government. While talks on this fateful motion were under way, the Congress appointed a committee to prepare a formal Declaration of Independence. Virginia lawyer Thomas Jefferson was chosen to prepare the final draft.
  • Washington's Christmas night attack

    Desperate for a victory, Washington led 2,400 men in rowboats across the ice-packed Delaware River on Christmas night. They then marched to Trenton, New Jersey and defeated Hessians in a surprise attack.
  • French-American Alliance

    The france have secretly aided the patriots since the late 1770's
  • Saratoga

    General Burgoyne planned to lead an army from Canada to Albany, where he would then meet British troops as they arrived from NYC. The two would then join forces to isolate New England from the colonies. While he was fighting off colonial troops, Burgoyne didn’t realize that his British officers were preoccupied with holding Philadelphia and weren’t coming to meet him. American troops finally surrounded Burgoyne at Saratoga, where he surrendered in October 1777.
  • Valley Forge

    in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. 2,000+ soldiers died of lack in food & supplies, yet the survivors didn’t desert. Their endurance and suffering filled Washington’s letters to the Congress.
  • Friedrich von Steuben & Marquis de Lafayette

    Friedrich von Steuben, helped train the Continental Army. Other military leaders, like Marquis de Lafayette arrived to offer help. Lafayette harbored France for French reinforcements in 1779 and led a command in Virginia in the last years of war. With the help of these military leaders, The Continental Army became an effective fighting force.
  • British surrender at Yorktown

    By September, around 17,000 French & American troops
    surrounded the British in Yorktown and began a never-ending raid. On October 19, 1781, Cornwallis finally surrendered. The Americans had shocked the world and defeated the British.
  • Treaty of Paris

    Peace conferences began in Paris a year after Yorktown. In September of 1783, the delegates signed the Treaty of Paris, which confirmed U.S. independence and set boundaries upon the new nation. The United States now stretched from the Atlantic Ocean to the Mississippi River and from Canada to the Florida border.