Redcoats’ Advantages • Britain had the most powerful navy in the world. • They had well-trained soldiers. • They had the money to hire German mercenaries. • Mercenaries are soldiers paid to fight for another country.
Redcoats’ Disadvantages • The war was unpopular in Britain. • Many British citizens did not want to pay taxes to support the war. • It was slow and expensive for Britain to fight a war thousands of miles away across the Atlantic Ocean.
Continentals’ Advantages • Continental soldiers were defending their homes. • They had a stronger will to fight. • They knew the land. • They had the strong leadership of George Washington.
Continentals’ Disadvantages • They entered the war without an army or a navy. • It was difficult to get men to serve in the Continental army. • Many soldiers quit because they often went without pay, food, uniforms, and weapons.
Washington Leads the Army • Washington was in charge of getting an untrained army ready to fight against Britain’s powerful army. He joined in colonial protests against the British. • Martha Washington, George Washington’s wife, helped with paperwork and by sewing socks and cooking soup for the soldiers.
Support for the Soldiers • Mary Ludwig Hayes, known as “Molly Pitcher,” carried water for the soldiers at the battle of Monmouth. • Margaret Corbin took over her husband’s cannon when he was killed in the attack on Fort Washington. She fought until she was wounded. • Deborah Sampson disguised herself as a man and fought as a soldier. • Ester DeBerdt Reed formed a committee of women who went door-to-door collecting donations for the soldiers.
African-American Soldiers • At first, George Washington agreed not to let enslaved Africans join the army, but he later changed his mind. • At this time, many northern colonies decided that if African-Americans were willing to fight and die for the freedom of all Americans, they should be freed.
Patriot Spies • Washington was very clever when it came to spying. • Instead of codes names, he used code numbers in his messages. • Haym Solomon, a member of one of the Patriots’ spy rings, used his knowledge of many languages to urge German soldiers to leave the British army. He was captured by the British, but escaped. He also helped to support the war financially.