The American Revolution Unit 2 - Colonial Dissatisfaction & The American Revolution, 1754 – 1783 APUSH Mrs. Baker
Choosing Sides Patriots Loyalists
Problems for Washington • Only one third of the colonists were in favor of a war for independence • One third were Loyalists • Final third were neutral]. • State/colony loyalties • Congress couldn’t tax to raise money for the Continental Army • Poor training • Until the arrival of Baron von Steuben.
Comparing Sides – The Red Coats Strengths Weaknesses • Unrest in Ireland • British government inept and confused, led by King George III and Lord North • Lack of British desire to crush American cousins • Whigs cheered American victories • Military difficulties • Second rate generals • Brutal treatment of soldiers • Inadequate, poor provisions • Need for clear victory • Armies were 3000 miles from home. • Vast colonial territory to subdue • Population (7.5 million to 2.6 million) • Monetary wealth • Naval forces • Professional army • 6’ muskets with bayonets attached • 50,000 British • 30,000 Hessians • German mercenaries • 30,000 American Loyalists
Comparing Sides – The Patriots Strengths Weaknesses • Outstanding leadership • Military – Washington • Diplomatic – Franklin • European imports – Lafayette, Kosciuzko • Colonists fighting defensively • Self – sustaining agricultural base • Colonists were better marksmen • Americans accurate at 200 yards • Moral advantage • Americans were supporting a just cause with a positive goal • Colonies were badly organized • Disunited for war • Continental Congress lacked decisive action • No written constitution • Articles of Confederation not adopted until 1781. • Colonies were jealous of Congress • Economic difficulties • Little metallic currency available • Fearful of taxation • Inflation led to increased prices, desertions from army. • Limited military supplies • American soldiers were numerous but unreliable • Profiteers used greed and speculation to weaken morale and aid the British
Military Strategies America Britain • Make an alliance with one of Britain’s enemies • Wear down the British supply lines • Supply longs were long and exposed • Guerilla tactics • Do not have to win the battle but have to wear the British down • Break the colonies in half • Blockade the ports to prevent the flow of goods and supplies from an ally • Capture major American cities
Bunker Hill • Colonials seized Breed’s Hill • Commanded a strong position overlooking Boston. • Over a 1,000 redcoats killed by 1,500 sharpshooters • American gunpowder supply ran out and were forced to abandon hill • Viewed as a victory for colonists due to causalities inflicted • Bloodiest battle of the War for Independence • British left Boston and conducted war from New York. • After Bunker Hill, King declared colonies in a state of rebellion
Saratoga • British sought to capture New York and sever New England from the rest of the colonies. • Benedict Arnold saved New England by slowing down British invasion of New York • General Burgoyne (British) surrendered entire command at Saratoga on Oct. 17, 1777 to Americans • Saratoga = one of history’s most decisive battles • French provided assistance to American cause • Spain and Dutch eventually join on American side • England faces world war • Revived colonial cause Why is this Battle considered a Turning Point?
Franco-American Alliance • French eager to exact revenge on the British for the Seven Years War • New World colonies = England’s most valuable overseas possessions • Secret supply to Americans until Declaration of Independence • Turning point for French aid • showed the determination of Americans • Franco-American Alliance, 1778 • Result of Battle of Saratoga • Recognized Americans independence
A New Focus & Strategy The Southern Campaign, 1780 – 1781
Britain’s Southern Strategy • Britain believes there are more Loyalists in the South than the North. • Southern resources were more valuable and worth preserving than in the North. • British win a number of small victories • Unable to pacify the countryside • General Nathaniel Greene • Able to remove British troops from areas of British victory • Forces General Cornwallis to abandoned Southern strategy • Falls back to Yorktown on Chesapeake Bay
The Battle of Yorktown, 1781 • French join the American troops at battle of Yorktown • Admiral de Grasse, head of powerful fleet from West Indies • Washington marched 300+ miles from New York to Yorktown. • French army under Rochambeau, combined with Washington attacked British by land while de Grasse blocked off British from sea after defeating British fleet. • October 19, 1781 • Cornwallis surrenders entire force of 7,000 men • War continues for one more year
The Treaty of Paris, 1783 • Britain formally recognizes U.S. independence • Boundaries set from Great Lakes on the North to the Mississippi River on the West to Florida on the South. • No access to the Gulf of Mexico • No further persecution of Loyalists and restitution for confiscated property "recommended" to states. • Fishing access for Americans in waters off East Canada • No reference to ending slave trade, an original goal of the Americans • America alone gained from the war • Britain lost colonies • France got revenge but went bankrupt = French Revolution • Spain gained little
Social Changes of the American Revolution • Over 200,000 American soldiers fought • 10% who fought died • All of society became involved in war • State and national governments were created • Men with military experience volunteered for positions in army • Some merchants loaned money to army and Congress • Other became very wealthy through wartime contracts • Most of fighting was done by poor Americans • African Americans fought • 5,000 on American side • 30,000 on British • Native Americans fought on British side • Women • managed farms and businesses while men were away • traveled with armies as cooks and nurses
Essential Question… Was the American Revolution avoidable?
A Thought from Benjamin Franklin… • “On Reflection it now seems probable, that if the foregoing Plan or some thing like it, had been adopted and carried into Execution, the subsequent Separation of the Colonies from the Mother Country might not so soon have happened, nor the Mischiefs suffered on both sides have occurred, perhaps during another Century. For the Colonies, if so united, would have really been, as they then thought themselves, sufficient to their own Defence, and being trusted with it, as by the Plan, an Army from Britain, for that purpose would have been unnecessary: The Pretences for framing the Stamp-Act would not then have existed, nor the other Projects for drawing a Revenue from America to Britain by Acts of Parliament, which were the Cause of the Breach, and attended with such terrible Expence of Blood and Treasure: so that the different Parts of the Empire might still have remained in Peace and Union.” -1789