Jan 1, 1215
Magna Carta/Great Charter(Info)-King John of England agreed, in 1215, to the demands of his barons and authorized that handwritten copies of Magna Carta be prepared on parchment, affixed with his seal, and publicly read throughout the realm.
Jamestown Colony(Info)-In June of 1606, King James I granted a charter to a group of London entrepreneurs, the Virginia Company, to establish a satellite English settlement in the Chesapeake region of North America. By December, 104 settlers sailed from London instructed to settle Virginia, find gold, and seek a water route to the Orient. Some traditional scholars of early Jamestown history believe that those pioneers could not have been more ill-suited for the task.
House of Burgess(Info)-The House of Burgesses, which no longer exists in government, was an elected lower house in a legislative assembly in the colony of Virginia around 1619.
Plymouth Colony(Info)-The Virginia Company of Plymouth, a group of English merchant investors, had failed to establish permanent colonies in the northern reaches of what was then known as Virginia.
Mayflower Compact(Info)-The Mayflower Compact is a written agreement composed by a consensus of the new Settlers arriving at New Plymouth in November of 1620. They had traveled across the ocean on the ship Mayflower which was anchored in what is now Provincetown Harbor near Cape Cod, Massachusetts.
Fundamentals Orders of Connecticut(Info)-In the spring of 1638 three Connecticut towns, Windsor, Hartford and Wethersfield, chose representatives and held a general court at Hartford. At its opening session the Reverend Thomas Hooker preached a powerful sermon on the text that "the foundation of authority is laid in the free consent of the people."
Culpeper's Rebellion(Info)-In 1677, restive North Carolina colonists complained that their tax monies were being spent imprudently and that enforcement of the Navigation Acts was harming businessmen.The following year, discontented forces in Albemarle staged a revolt against the appointed governor. John Culpeper was installed as the chief executive and shortly thereafter summoned a popular assembly.
Glorious Revolution(Info)-It is also called the Bloodless Revolution. The restoration of Charles II in 1660 was met with misgivings by many Englishmen who suspected the Stuarts of Roman Catholic and absolutist leanings. Charles II increased this distrust by not being responsive to Parliament, by his toleration of Catholic dissent, and by favoring alliances with Catholic powers in Europe.
English Bill of Rights(Info)- The English Bill of Rights was enacted by the English Parliament and singed into law by King William III in 1689.It is one of the fundamental documents of English constitutional law, and marks a fundamental milestone in the progression of English society from a nation of subjects under the plenary authority of a monarch to a nation of free citizens with inalienable rights.
Salem Witch Trials(Info)-Nineteen men and women, all having been convicted of witchcraft, were carted to Gallows Hill, a barren slope near Salem Village, for hanging. Another man of over eighty years was pressed to death under heavy stones for refusing to submit to a trial on witchcraft charges.
First Great Awakening(Info)-The First Great Awakening, or simply Great Awakening, was a religious revitalization movement that swept the Atlantic region, and especially the American colonies in the 1730s and 1740s, leaving a permanent impact on American religion. Indeed, the First Great Awakening launched the Evangelical Christian movement in America
Albany Plan of Union(Info)-The Albany Plan of Union was a plan to place the British North American colonies under a more centralized government. The plan was adopted on July 10, 1754, by representatives from seven of the British North American colonies.
French and Indian War(Info)-The final Colonial War (1689-1763) was the French and Indian War, which is the name given to the American theater of a massive conflict involving Austria, England, France, Great Britain, Prussia, and Sweden called the Seven Years War.
Proclamation Line of 1763(Info)-The end of the French and Indian War in 1763 was a cause for great celebration in the colonies, for it removed several ominous barriers and opened up a host of new opportunities for the colonists. The French had effectively hemmed in the British settlers and had, from the perspective of the settlers, played the "Indians" against them.
Pontiac's Rebellion(Info)-The Indian tribes of the Ohio Valley were surprised and angered by the defeat of their French allies in the French and Indian War; the natives were in possession of their homelands and had little feeling of loss during their association with Frenchmen.
Sugar /Revenue Act of 1764(Info)-On April 5, 1764, Parliament passed a modified version of the Sugar and Molasses Act (1733), which was about to expire. Under the Molasses Act colonial merchants had been required to pay a tax of six pence per gallon on the importation of foreign molasses.
Son of Liberty(Info)-In Boston in early summer of 1765 a group of shopkeepers and artisans who called themselves The Loyal Nine, began preparing for agitation against the Stamp Act. As that group grew, it came to be known as the Sons of Liberty.
Stamp ActInfo-The Stamp Act was passed by the British Parliament on March 22, 1765. The new tax was imposed on all American colonists and it required them to pay taxes on every piece of printed paper they used.
Virgina Resolves(Info)-It is defined as Virginia’s response to the British Parliament’s Stamp Act of 1765. It was created by the Virginia General Assembly, the legislative body of the Commonwealth of Virginia. More importantly, it is defined as one of the first acts of open revolution to a British law.
Townshend Act(Info)-These laws placed new taxes on glass, lead, paints, paper, and tea. Colonial reaction to these taxes was the same as to the Sugar Act and Stamp Act, and Britain eventually repealed all the taxes except the one on tea.
Boston Massacre(Info)-The Boston Massacre was the killing of five colonists by British regulars on March 5, 1770. It was the culmination of tensions in the American colonies that had been growing since Royal troops first appeared in Massachusetts in October 1768 to enforce the heavy tax burden imposed by the Townshend Acts.
Gaspee Incident(Info)-the Gaspee was chasing a merchant ship believed to be smuggling goods. The Gaspee ran aground in Narragansett Bay, near Providence. The next night, a group of men boarded the Gaspee. They were led by John Brown, a wealthy merchant from Providence. They wounded the lieutenant who was commanding the ship, and set the ship on fire.
Tea Act(Info)-The act was not intended to raise revenue in the American colonies, and in fact imposed no new taxes. It was designed to prop up the East India Company which was floundering financially and burdened with eighteen million pounds of unsold tea.
Boston Tea Party(Info)-On Monday morning, the 29th of November, 1773, a handbill was posted all over Boston, containing the following words: "Friends! Brethren! Countrymen!--That worst of plagues, the detested tea, shipped for this port by the East India Company, is now arrived in the harbor.
Intolerable Acts(Info)-The government spent immense sums of money on troops and equipment in an attempt to subjugate Massachusetts. British merchants had lost huge sums of money on looted, spoiled, and destroyed goods shipped to the colonies.
First Continental Congress(Info)-The first Continental Congress met in Carpenter's Hall in Philadelphia, from September 5, to October 26, 1774. Carpenter's Hall was also the seat of the Pennsylvania Congress. All of the colonies except Georgia sent delegates.
Edenton Tea Party(Info)-The Edenton Tea Party was a political protest in Edenton, North Carolina, in response to the Tea Act, which was passed by the British Parliament in 1773.
Second Continental Congress(Info)-Now the professional imperial army was attempting to arrest patriot leaders, and minutemen had been killed in their defense. In May 1775, with Redcoats once again storming Boston, the Second Continental Congress convened in Philadelphia.
Mecklenburg Resolves(Info)-The Mecklenburg Resolves, or Charlottetown (Charlotte Town) Resolves, and sometimes referred to as the "Mecklenburg Declaration", was a list of statements.
The Halifax Resolves were the first direction from an entire colony instructing its delegates to the Continental Congress to vote for independence.The Halifax Resolves is the name later given to a resolution adopted by the Fourth Provincial Congress of the Province of North Carolina on April 12, 1776
Declaration of Independence(Info)-Declaration of Independence is at once the nation's most cherished symbol of liberty and Jefferson's most enduring monument. Here, in exalted and unforgettable phrases, Jefferson expressed the convictions in the minds and hearts of the American people.
Articles of Conferation(Info)-The Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation, the first constitution of the United States, on November 15, 1777. However, ratification of the Articles of Confederation by all thirteen states did not occur until March 1, 1781.
Shay's Rebellion(Info)-The crisis of the 1780s was most intense in the rural and relatively newly settled areas of central and western Massachusetts. Many farmers in this area suffered from high debt as they tried to start new farms.
Treaty of Paris 1783(Info)-The American War for Independence (1775-83) was actually a world conflict, involving not only the United States and Great Britain but also France, Spain, and the Netherlands. The peace process brought a vaguely formed, newly born United States into the arena of international diplomacy, playing against the largest, most sophisticated, and most established powers on earth.
Land Ordinance of 1785(Info)-Law passed by Congress that allowed for sales of land in the Northwest Territory and set up standards for land sale that became precedents. Among them was the idea of selling mile-square sections of land.
Constitutional Convention(Info)-The year was 1787. The place: the State House in Philadelphia, the same location where the Declaration of Independence had been signed 11 years earlier. For four months, 55 delegates from the several states met to frame a Constitution for a federal republic that would last into "remote futurity."
Land Ordinance of 1787(Info)-Ordinance of 1787, adopted by the Congress of Confederation for the government of the Western territories ceded to the United States by the states. It created the Northwest Territory and is frequently called the Northwest Ordinance. It was based on the ordinance of 1784, drafted by Thomas Jefferson,
Committes of Correspondence(Info)-The Committees of Correspondence were formed throughout the colonies as a means of coordinating action against Great Britain. Many were formed by the legislatures of the respective colonies, others by extra-governmental associations such as the Sons of Liberty in the various colonies.
Federalist/Anti-Federalists paper(Info)-During the period from the drafting and proposal of the federal Constitution in September, 1787, to its ratification in 1789 there was an intense debate on ratification. The principal arguments in favor of it were stated in the series written by Madison, Hamilton, and Jay called the Federalist Papers, although they were not as widely read as numerous independent local speeches and articles.
Whiskey Rebellion(Info)-Angered by an excise tax imposed on whiskey in 1791 by the federal government, farmers in the western counties of Pennsylvania engaged in a series of attacks on excise agents.
Mercantilism(Info)-Mercantilism was the theory of trade espoused by the major European powers from roughly 1500 to 1800. It advocated that a nation should export more than it imported and accumulate bullion (especially gold) to make up the difference.