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Early American History

  • Mar 11, 1215

    Magna Carta

    Magna Carta
    in 1215, the Magna Carta was a Charter written in Latin that was created to limit the power of the British King and give rights to free men. It allowed people to only be punished by the law instead of the King's will. King John of Englend was forced to sign it by his barons. This document influeneced Patriot ideals during the Revolutionary War Era.
  • English Bill of Rights

    English Bill of Rights
    The English Bill of Rights was a document that gave all Englishmen the Freedom of Speech, prohibited cruel and unusual punishment, the Right to Bear Arms. It also prevented a standing army in peacetime without Parliament's consent and it prevented the King, or Queen from interfering with politics. It was ignored by King George III, the King of England during the Revolutionary War and it influenced the decisions of the Founding Fathers when they were creating the Constitution.
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    French and Indian War

    The French and Indian War was a war that was started when British settlers moved into the Ohio River Valley, which was owned by the French. The French and British began building forts until war broke out when George Washington attacked the French and lost. Native Americans sided with both countries. The War ended with the Treaty of Paris in 1763. It put the British in large debt.
  • Sugar Act

    Sugar Act
    The Sugar Act was an act passed to Britain to make profit in the colonies from sales of sugar to pay its debts from the French and Indian War.
  • Stamp Act

    Stamp Act
    The Stamp Act was one of Parliament's efforts to make money from the colonies. It directly taxed colonists on sales of any printed paper in the colonies, which angered the colonists because they were being taxed directly without permission.
  • Organization of the Sons of Liberty

    Organization of the Sons of Liberty
    The Sons of Liberty were organized by a group of Bostonians who called themselves "The Loyal Nine". They felt provoked by the Stamp Act, so they met and formed the Sons of Liberty. The group was supported by Samuel Adams, but due to the fact that he was a politician he couldn't be too involved because of their acts of violence.
  • Repeal of the Stamp Act

    Repeal of the Stamp Act
    In 1766, Parliament repealed the Stamp Act after lots of protest from the colonists and after a request by Benjamin Franklin to repeal it.
  • Declaratory Act

    Declaratory Act
    The Declaratory Act was an Act that simply stated that Parliament had complete control over the colonies. It accompanied the repeal of the Stamp Act.
  • Townshend Acts

    Townshend Acts
    The Townshend Acts were laws that taxed the colonies on imports of paper, glass, lead, paint and tea. It also only allowed the colonies to trade with Britain. Charles Townshend, the creator of these acts died before it took affect. The colonists were angered by the Townshend Acts, so they boycotted British goods.
  • Boston Massacre

    Boston Massacre
    The Boston Massacre occured in Boston when colonists and a soldier got into an argument. As the argument escalated, the crowd of colonists grew and a group of British soldiers arrived to reinforce the lone British soldier. Eventually the soldiers shot into the crowd in self defense, killing four colonists. The soldiers were defended in court and weren't punished because they acting in sef-defense.
  • Tea Act

    Tea Act
    The Tea Act was passed by Parliament following the repeal of most of the Townshend Acts. It also allowed the East India Company to sell tea directly to the colonies. The repeal of the Townshend Acts encouraged the colonists to keep pushing for the repeal of laws and the colonists also boycotted British tea.
  • Boston Tea Party

    Boston Tea Party
    The Boston Tea Party was an event in Boston Harbor when members of the Sons of Liberty diguised as Native Americans dumped tea off of British ships moored in the harbor. It infuriated Parliament.
  • Invention of the Steamboat

    Invention of the Steamboat
    In 1774, Marquis Claude de Jouffroy created a working steamboat. This was important because steamboats were heavily used in the 1800's for river transportation.
  • Intolerable/Coercive Acts

    Intolerable/Coercive Acts
    The Intolerable Acts were a series of laws passed by Parliament that did the following:
    Boston Harbor was shut down Brought the Massachuesetts government under Parliament's control by changing the government Allowed royal officials to get friendlier trials in court by moving them Gave land to the colony of Quebec
  • Closing of Boston Harbor

    Closing of Boston Harbor
    Boston Harbor was closed as a result of the Boston Tea Party. This angered many colonists and crippled Boston's economy. This caused severe tensions to rise.
  • Cancellation of Massachuesetts's Charter

    Cancellation of Massachuesetts's Charter
    The Massachuesetts Charter was cancelled by Parliament as a result of the Boston Tea Party. This angered Massachuesetts colonists. It was part of the Intolerable Acts.
  • Quartering Act

    Quartering Act
    This law was passed by Parliament and required colonists to house British soldiers, which angered the colonists because the soldiers ate their food and were usually in charge of the house and they also had to pay for the soldiers.
  • 1st Continental Congress

    1st Continental Congress
    The 1st Continental Congress met in Carpenter's Hall Pennslyvania. They met to decide how to respond to the Intolerable Acts passed by Parliament. They decided to cut off trade with Britain until the Intolerable Acts were repealed.
  • George Washington is Given Command of the Continental Army

    George Washington is Given Command of the Continental Army
  • Liberty or Death

    Liberty or Death
    Patrick Henry's Liberty or Death speech was given to the Viginia House of Burgess. He urged the House to fight the British for independence.
  • Seizing of Patriot Weapons

    Seizing of Patriot Weapons
    In 1775 General Thomas Gage seized patriot weapons that had been stockpiled for war. More weapons were going to be seized, at Lexington and Concord, but his efforts were stopped by Paul Revere and minutemen.
  • Ride of Paul Revere

    Ride of Paul Revere
    Paul Revere, a silversmith, rode on a horse to Lexington and Concord to warn the minutemen that the redcoats were coming to take their stockpiled weapons. This resulted in the battles of Lexington and Concord. A Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, a poet, wrote a poem about Revere's ride in 1860.
  • Revolutionary War Starts

    Revolutionary War Starts
    The Revelutionary War started when minutemen engaged British soldiers in the battles of Lexington and Concord. British soldiers were sent to destroy patriot supplies, but the patriots fought them at Lexington and retreated to Concord where they stopped the British.
  • 2nd Continental Congress

    2nd Continental Congress
    The 2nd Continental Congress met in response to the British invasion of Boston. They were going to state their grievances to Britain, but instead they decided to declare independence.
  • Capture of Fort Ticonderoga

    Capture of Fort Ticonderoga
    On May 10, 1775 Fort Ticonderoga was captured by Ethan Allen, his Green Mountain Boys and Benedict Arnold. They took the fort's cannons to help arm the rebellion.
  • Battle of Bunker Hill

    Battle of Bunker Hill
    The Battle of Bunker was a battle between patriots and redcoats at Charlestown. Despite the British victory, the British suffered heavy casualties, and the patriots suffered light combat losses.
  • 2nd Continental Congress Relocation

    2nd Continental Congress Relocation
    In September, 1775 the 2nd Continental Congress was forced to leave Philidelphia, Pennslyvania and relocate to York Pennslyvania because of a British invasion of Philidelphia led by THomas Gage.
  • Canadian Campaign

    Canadian Campaign
    The Canadian Campaign was an effort by Patriots to invade Canada and make it their "14th Colony".Two major leaders were Richard Montgomery and Benedict Arnold. The Patriots took Montreal, but as a result of heavy casualties in their attmept to capture Quebec and the death of Montgomery, ended their hopes for the occupation of Canada.
  • Battle of Nassau

    Battle of Nassau
    On March 3, 1776 Continental Marines landed on Nassau in the Bahamas. They lost two shipes, but continued combat because British Ships were in a harbor due to weather. The Patriots won with their ground force of 210 marines and 50 sailors against the british forces of 110. This was the first amphibious landing of the Continental Marines (Same force as United States Marine Corps). This was also one of the Continental Navy's first engagments.
  • Battle of Dorchester Heights

    Battle of Dorchester Heights
    In the Battle of Dorchester Heights, George Washington captured Boston using cannons from Henry Knox to drive out the British occupiers led by General William Howe.
  • Virginia Declaration of Rights

    Virginia Declaration of Rights
    The Declaration of Rights was written by George Mason and it was the basis for the Bill of Rights.
  • Battle of New York

    Battle of New York
    In the Battle of New York, the British captured New York from Patriot forces led by George Washington. They were led by William Howe. As a result, the Patriot spy Nathan Hale was executed by the British.
  • Battle of Long Island

    Battle of Long Island
    In the Battle of Long Island, George Washington's forces fought against William Howe at Long Island. The British had 3 times the amount of soldiers that the Patriots had and they inflicted losses on the Patriots that were 5 times as many as their own losses. The outcome of the battle was a patriot defeat and them being driven out of New York.
  • Battle of Trenton

    Battle of Trenton
    The Patriot cause was weak. Many people believed it would fail. Patriot soldiers were waiting for their contracts to expire. They needed to turn the conditions around. After crossing the Delaware, George Washington attacked the Hessian-held city of Trenton. The Hessians, German mercenaries, were shocked when they woke up to find a Patriot army attacking them. After the desath of their leader, Johann Rall the battle ended. 900 Hessians were captured. Not a single American died in the battle.
  • Battle of Saratoga

    Battle of Saratoga
    In the Battle of Saratoga,Horatio Gates captured New York, the British army of 5,000 men and John Burgoyne. This is considered to be the turning point of the war because as a result of this, the French and Spanish thought the cause was worth fighting for and put immense resources into the war.
  • Fort Sackville

    Fort Sackville
    Fort Sackville was a fort built by the British, but it was captured by local French residents after they found out about the French declaration of war against Britain. The fort was given the Patriot forces under Leonard Helm. The fort was taken back by the British, but Lietenant Colonel George Rogers Clark retook Sackville.
  • Battle of Flamborough Head

    Battle of Flamborough Head
    In the Battle of Flamborough Head, the HMS Serapis engaged the Bonhomme RIchard. The commander of the Serapis, Captain Richard Pearson called out to the captain of the Bonhomme Richard, John Paul Jones to surrender. Jones replied "I have not yet begunb to fight!". The battle resulted in the sinking of the Bonhomme Richard and the capture of the HMS Serapis. The Serapis was renamed the USS Serapis, but then it was given to the French and was wrecked off the ccoast of Madagascar.
  • Battle of Charleston

    Battle of Charleston
    In the Battle of Charleston, Benjamin Lincoln, a Patriot leader faced Charles Cornwallis, a British General. The British besieged the city of Charleston and eventually overwhelmed the defenders. As a result, 5,000 Americans were captured.
  • Articles of Confederation

    Articles of Confederation
    The Articles of Confederation was ratified by the newly formed states in 1781. It severely limited the power of the central government and gave tremendous amounts of power to the states. It wasn't sufficient enough to run the country, which became obvious after Shays's Rebellion. It didn't allow the Federal Government to print money and it didn't establish a universal currency. It didn't allow a standing army in peacetime and it gave the Federal Government no way to stop state disputes.
  • Battle of Yorktown

    Battle of Yorktown
    The battle of Yorktown was the last major battle of the Revolutionary War. It resulted in the defeat of the besieged British defenders by the George Washington-led Patriots with the assistance of Marquis de Lafeyette, Comte de Rochambeau, the French navy led by Comte de Grasse and Nathanael Greene. The British force of 8,000 and their leader, Charles Cornwallis were captured. ,
  • Shays's Rebellion

    Shays's Rebellion
    In August, 1786, Daniel Shays's started a rebellion in protest of financial problems in Massachusetts. The rebels' first target was Springfield Armory, a major weapons manufacturing facility in Massachusetts. The rebels couldn't take the armory because of the efforts of William Shepard, a general in the militia. Shays was a hero in the Revolution and the rebels were farmers. The rebels crushed, but the rebels were forgiven. Ths showed that the Articles of Confederation needed a replacement.
  • Northwest Ordinance of 1787

    Northwest Ordinance of 1787
    On the July 13, 1787 Congress passed the Northwest Ordinance of 1787. It created the first territory of the United States, the Northwest Territory. It stopped states from claiming land and it allowed territories to apply to become states. It gave rights to residents of territories and it made slavery illegal in territories.
  • Ratification of the Constitution

    Ratification of the Constitution
    In 1788, the Constitution was ratified to replace the Articles of Confederation. It is still the Supreme Law of the Land today due to its flexibility to adapt to the nation's changing needs. It gave the Federal Government more power and it gave states less power. Many foreign countries including Mexico, the Phillipines and many European countries model their constitutions on the US Constitution.
  • Invention of the Cotton Gin

    Invention of the Cotton Gin
    In 1793, Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin. This revolutionized the production of cotton, which led more slavery for the cotton industry.
  • Invention of the Railroad

    Invention of the Railroad
    In 1804, Richard Trevithick created the first locomotive train. This greatly affected America by the creation of transcontinental railroads.
  • Invention of the Camera

    Invention of the Camera
    The invention of the camera was important because it allowed historical events to be photographically documented and it showed people the horrors of war during the Civil War.
  • Invention of the Telegraph

    Invention of the Telegraph
    In 1837, Samuel Morse invented the telegraph. This was very important for the United States because it allowed people to communicate over long distances very easily.
  • Invention of the Telephone

    Invention of the Telephone
    In 1876, Alexander Graham Bell invented the telephone, which allowed people to communicate more easily.