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The American Revolution
Transcript of The American Revolution
The Continental Army
The British Army
Shortage of men
Poorly trained men with little experience
Congress had a difficult time providing funding
Patriotism: Men were willing to fight and die for their country
France helped with funding, supplies, training and troops
George Washington's leadership
Plenty of men
Plenty of supplies
Recruited loyalists, Native Americans and Africans
Sending troops and supplies across the Atlantic was slow and costly
King George was never able to convince British citizens that the war was worth fighting
African Americans in the War
After the signing of the Declaration of Independence, many Patriots found a new sense of hope... hope for an independent country of their own.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
However, with a serious shortage of volunteers Washington soon changed his mind, and by 1779, about 15 percent of the soldiers in the Continental army were African Americans. Large numbers of black sailors also served in the Continental navy.
As black Americans joined the war effort, some whites began to question their own beliefs. How could they accept slavery if they truly believed that "all men are created equal", with the rights to "life, liberty, and happiness"? By the war’s end, this thinking (and northern economy that did not rely on slave labor) VT, CT, MA, NH, RI, and PA had all taken steps to end slavery.
In the wake of Washington's defeats, Thomas Paine published a new pamphlet, The American Crisis, in which he wrote:
Not long after The American's victory at Saratoga, France entered the war as an ally of the United States.
The French government sent money, weapons, troops, and warships to the Americans.
Though the victory at Saratoga had lifted their spirits, the Americans still faced the serious problem of supplying their own troops.
The winter at Valley Forge was very harsh.
A lack of food and supplies combined with the cold frigid winter and the spread of disease made for a very difficult time.
Washington made a risky decision to inoculate his men, which paid off and the American Army survived the winter.
After failing to conquer any state in the North, the British changed strategies and moved south.
Though the British saw some success on the battlefields, guerrilla troops kept the American fight alive with hit and run tactics.
Early in the war, Washington banned blacks from serving in the Continental Army. The British however promised freedom to all slaves who took up arms for the king. As a result, thousands of runaways became Loyalists and fought for Great Britain.
John Singleton Copley, a Massachusetts Loyalist, completed this painting,
The Death of Major Peirson
in London in 1784. The painting commemorates the 1781 death of Major Francis Peirson at the Battle of Jersey in the Channel Islands.
The American Revolution
April 1775 - September 1783
Lexington and Concord
The Second Continental Congress gathers in Philadelphia
Siege of Fort Ticonderoga
Battle of Chelsea Creek
Battle of Bunker Hill
Battle of Quebec
British abandon Boston
The Battle of Bunker Hill
The British sent troops to take over the hills surrounding Boston, but the colonists had prepared for them. Though the British were ultimately successful in taking over the area, they also sustained far more casualties than the colonists. The British had assumed that they would easily defeat the colonists, but the Battle of Bunker Hill showed them that maybe this war would be more difficult than they thought. Even with the loss, this battle proved to be a moral victory for the colonists and acted to rally more colonists to join the war effort.
Fun fact: The Battle of Bunker Hill was actually fought on Breed's Hill. The colonists had planned to fortify their position at Bunker Hill, but Colonel William Prescott instead directed the 1,000 patriots joining him to build an earthen fort atop neighboring Breed’s Hill, a shorter peak with a closer perch to the British under siege in Boston. Whether Prescott ignored orders or was simply ignorant of Charlestown’s geography is unknown, but the subsequent battle that unfolded was named for the original target—Bunker Hill—even though most of it occurred one-third of a mile south on Breed’s Hill.
There were way more battles than this Prezi reviews. The battles that are covered here, are generally considered the most important battles of the war. That is, these essential battles really do the most to tell the story/progression of the war.
Used stolen British weapons to force the British out of Boston
Spread false rumors that the Continental Army had more supplies/men than they actually had.
Used a network of spies to gather intelligence on the British.
Washington's Leadership: Fighting Smart
Independence is signed
The British chased Washington and his men all the way to Pennsylvania, delivering defeat after defeat to the Americans, as they retreated.
Things looked bad for the Americans, and many believed that the war was all but over.
After abandoning Boston, the British decided to focus on capturing New York. The idea was that capturing New York would split the northern and southern states, making it difficult for them to communicate and work together.
As a way of inspiring his men before the battle, Washington had the Declaration read out loud to his troops. It wasn't enough, and the Americans suffered a terrible loss.
Battle of Long Island (Also known as the Battle of Brooklyn Heights)
These are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country;
but he that stands it NOW, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman.
Three days later, late Christmas eve, Washington and his army crossed the icy Delaware River to surprise and capture 868 Hessian mercenaries, camped in Trenton.
A week later, the Americans captured another 300 British troops in Princeton
These victories reinvigorated the Patriots. There suddenly was a new sense of hope.
They also showed the British that winning the war might be more difficult than they originally thought.
Washington also decided to change strategies: Instead of trying to defeat the British, who was clearly the better prepared army, he decided to fight a defensive war. Rather than defeating the British, he hoped to tire them out.
The Battle of Trenton
The Battle of Princeton
Battle of Oriskany
Battle of Bennington
Battle of Brandywine
Battle of Saratoga Springs (Freeman's Farm)
Battle of Germantown
Battle of Saratoga (Bemis Heights)
This victory at Saratoga Springs marked a turning point in the war.
Before Saratoga, most of the world believed that the American cause was hopeless.
Now, the Americans had shown they could stand up to the British army and win.
The French had been paying close attention to the events taking place in America.
The French had been Great Britain's biggest rival over the last few decades.
An American victory would weaken the British, which would make France stronger.
Battle of Monmouth
In the last major battle in the north, the Battle of Monmouth ended in a stalemate, but forced the British to rethink their strategy yet again.
It is here that the legend of Molly Pitcher was born. A heroine of the Revolutionary War, Molly Pitcher was the nickname of a woman said to have carried water to American soldiers during the Battle of Monmouth on June 28, 1778, before taking over for her husband on the battlefield after he was no longer able to fight. There’s no definitive proof about who Pitcher was—and there’s debate about whether she even existed at all—but most commonly she’s been identified as Mary Hays McCauley.
The Capture of Savannah (December)
The Seige of Charleston (March)
The Battle of Camden (August)
The Battle of King's Mountain (October)
The Battle of Cowpens (January)
The Battle of Guilford Courthouse (March)
The Battle of Eutaw Springs (September)
The Battle of Yorktown
Washington did just that, and after bombarding the British base for three weeks, General Cornwallis had no choice but to surrender.
Although the war persisted on the high seas and elsewhere, the Patriot victory at Yorktown ended fighting in the American colonies. Peace negotiations began in 1782, and on September 3, 1783, the Treaty of Paris was signed, formally recognizing the United States as a free and independent nation after eight years of war.
After battling throughout the south, Washington was presented with an opportunity to deliver a final, decisive blow to the British at Yorktown.
In a stroke of luck, British General Cornwallis had made base at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay, right where the French Patriot allies were sailing.
If Washington could cut off the British on land, they would have them surrounded.