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Foreign Aid During the Revolutionary War

How different countries aided the American colonies in their war for independence from the British Empire.

Charlotte Brooke Zelazny

on 21 March 2012

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Transcript of Foreign Aid During the Revolutionary War

The Independence War Foreign Aid: Also known as the American Revolution Or the Revolutionary War Fought primarily between the British Empire and their American colonies 1775-1783 Won by the American colonies Now the United States of America FRANCE Republique Francaise Motivation: 1) To one-up England 2) A romantic interest in the American strugle 3) Unrest in the homeland (Sparked by artists such as Voltaire, Rousseau, Montesquieu, and Turgot; inspired the French to aid America and later led to the French Revolution) (mainly among the higher circles of society) Recruiters Benjamin Franklin Arthur Lee Silas Deane Famous worldwide; worked to change the opinion of the French government in favor of America (very popular with the French people) worked in partnership with Franklin Sent to France early 1776 by Congress to purchase military supplies, develop trade agreements, and hire military leaders for the Continental Army Sent by Congress early on, acquired military stores to the amount of $200,000 from the French government Negotiated The Treaty of Alliance with France, creating a military alliance between America and France against England SPAIN Reino de España Motivation: 1) Wanted to regain lands lost to Britain during the Seven Years' War and make gains against Britain's wordly possessions Did not want to encourage independence of colonies Wanted to keep the Bourbon Family Compact with France Bourbon Family Compact: Alliances between France and Spain in the form of agreements between French and Spanish branches of the Bourbon Family
1761 Treaty: Made during the Seven Years' War; the economic and political provisions of this treaty were more enduring than the militant provisions Recruiters John Jay Arthur Lee Appointed Minister to the Spanish Court Why? To gain support for the American cause and recognition of American independence Result: Spain joined France in the war against the British, but did not recognize American independence Jay was cut off from the court two years later Went to Spain in early 1777 as the American Commissioner, but received no official recognition Though he wasn't allowed further than Burgos, he remained Commissioner until John Jay was appointed Held various conferences with the Spanish Minister in Paris, and managed to secure a promise of a 3,000,000 livre loan in January of 1778, but only a small amount was actually paid Both essentially failed Aid: Marquis de Lafayette The Poles PRUSSIA Königreich Preussen Motivation: Baron Friedrich Wilhelm von Steuben Aid: Beginning in 1776: The foreign minister of France convinced King Louis XVI to send military supplies to America (Originally as revenge against Britain for their defeat of the French in the Seven Years') During the Year 1777: The Americans defeated British General Burgoyne at the Battle of Saratoga; as a result, King Louis XVI of France decided to support American independence (Mainly due to fear that the English would offer acceptable terms to the Americans) In Early 1778: February 1778 - The French agreed to recognize the independence of the American colonies; the Treaty of Alliance and the Treaty of Amity and Commerce negotiated by Benjamin Franklin (Treaty of Amity and Commerce: this treaty strengthened trade between America and France) Throughout the Remainder of the War: The French provided extensive military aid; French forces on both land and sea fought alongside the American colonists
The French also fought against the British in the West Indies, Africa, and India Highest point of French aid: In 1780, five battalions of French infantry and artillery landed in Rhode Island; in 1781, they marched to Virginia and joined the Conttinental Army under Washington and Lafayette Led to American victory at the Siege of Yorktown Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, sympathized with the cause of the American patriots Frederick the Great sent George Washington a sword engraved with the words, "From the oldest general in Europe to the greatest general on Earth." Opened the port of Dantzig to American cruisers Refused to allow any more Hessians to pass through Prussian dominions on their way to America Refused to form a treaty with America (Hessians: Germans hired to fight on the side of the British) (Prussia was aided immenesly by England during the Seven Years' War) Arrived at Valley Forge in 1778
The American Army was in severe need of battle training, as they'd inherited the British habit of considering military zeal "ungentlemanly" 1) Required officers to drill their soldiers Steuben's Solution: (Began by forming a demonstration battalion - taught battle drill to men from all regiments; they went back and taught the drills to their regiments) 2) Insisted every soldier be issued a standard musket and bayonet (Steuben taught them to load and fire in battle conditions and use the bayonets as offensive weapons) 3) Created a written copy of his orders for each regiment Steuben appreciated that the American Army held together even in destitution, and that he didn't have to enforce his instructions with a whip as in Europe. Recruited From the Prussian Army: Aid: SOURCES: http://www.usahistory.info/Revolution/foreign-aid.html
http://www.johnjay.net/wiki/Stanley_L._Klos/commentary/blackwednesday/revolutionarywarhall/JEANBAPTISTEROCHAMBEAU.COM/marquisdelafayette.net/ Casimir Pulaski Thaddeus Kosciuszko 1) Spain loaned scattered amounts of materials and money, totalling about $2,252,311.00 2) The Bourbon Kings of Spain and France each provided one million livres to start a dummy world trading company (Provided war materials and brought European military leaders to the patriots) 3) The Spanish started new fronts against the British: Spain took back various pieces of land from the British Including the Bahamas One of the most useful contributions of the Spanish navy was keeping the English in the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico, preventing them from reinforcing Cornwallis in Yorktown (This helped the Americans' success in the Siege of Yorktown, which, in turn, helped push national opinion in their favor) Outlawed from Russia for actions on behalf of Polish liberty Traveled to Paris; there he met Benjamin Franklin, who suggested him to Washington Arrived in Philadelphia 1777: His knowledge of warfare and tactics aided Washington at Brandywine and the Battle of Germantown Known as "Father of the American Cavalry": Pulaski used intense training methods to teach his men cavalry tactics He was severely wounded by cannon fire while charging into battle on horseback; he died several days later Tragically, Kosciuszko died before he could see the freedom of his homeland, Poland. Came to America from Poland as a skilled engineer in 1776 Congress commissioned him as Colonel of Engineers Accomplishments: 1) Helped fortify Philadelphia waterfront at Fort Mercer 2) Planned defense for Saratoga (1776/77) 3) Made chief engineer in West Point, New York, which became impenetrable to the British Army, and was later turned into a military academy (1778) 4) Appointed Brigadier General and awarded the Cincinnati Order Medal, two pistols, and a sword for his service (1783) Returned to Poland after American independence 1776: Signed an agreement with Silas Deane to serve as Major General in the Continental Army 1777/78: Arrived later next year and joined forces with Washington to fight in the Battle of Brandywine After recovering from a wound to the leg as a result of the battle, Lafayette and a force of 300 men defeated a superior force of Hessians Grudgingly went to conquer Canada under orders from a superior: the plan failed, eliminating the success of Washington's enemies and returning Lafayette to Washington First to suspect Lee of treachery at the Battle of Monmouth Formed a triangle of French and American forces around Britain's Lord Cornwallis at the Battle of Yorktown
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