The American Revolution: 1776-1783 The War Moves South
War in the West Glory at Sea • While fighting on land con’t, battle @ sea raged too • Brit Navy patrolled American harbors • Kept Patriot ships, & their allies too from entering harbors • British blockade prevented supplies & reinforcements from Continentals • To break blockade… • Congress orders 13 ships made • Only 2 hit sea B4 end of war • Other ships captured or destroyed • Brits make short work of new “navy” • Too weak to be effective, need help fast!!! • Congress hires 2,000 Privateers, private-owned merchant ships w/ guns to attack Brits • Basically, paid pirates • Do very well !!! • Some natives fought w/ Colonials, most sided w/ Brits • Saw them as less of a threat than colonists • Colonist were to eager to spread into native land • West of the App. Mts. • Brits & natives • Lead brutal attacks on the colonists • Henry Hamilton controlled Fort Detroit • Main British base in the west • Called Hamilton the “hair buyer” • He paid natives for scalps of colonists
John Paul Jones “I have not yet begun to fight!” • Daring, young navel officer • 1777- Begins raiding British ports • Sailed in old French ship given by Ben Franklin • Named it after Franklin’s Poor Richard’s Almanac • Bonhomme Richard (Good Richard) • Sept. 1779- sails near coast of Britain! • British fleet sees him • Warship Serapis attacks • 2 fight for 3+ hours!!! • Bonhomme Richard so badly damaged that Serapis asks if wants to surrender • “I have not yet begun to fight!” he replies • In end, Serapis surrenders but… • Bonhomme Richard sinks soon after • Victory makes him a navel hero
Struggles in the South British Victories Major General Lord Charles Cornwallis • In early years, colonists won many battles in south • Crushed Loyalist militia at Battle of Moore’s Creek (Wilmington) • Saved Charles Town too • But Brits realized underestimated Americans • Changed their strategy • Hard-hitting offensive • Concentrated their efforts in south • More loyalist support • Major cities were port cities • Use British navy to assist • Strategy works! • Late 1778- British Gen. in Command Henry Clinton sends 3,500 redcoats to take Savannah, GA • Brits take city, & most of state • 1780- Clinton himself heads south • Attacks Charles Town, SC • Surrender in May • Take 1,000’s of prisoners! • WORST DEFEAT of war • Clinton heads back to NY • Leaves Gen. Lord Cornwallis in command of war in south • Continentals send Gates’ army to take him on • 1780- Met at Camden, SC • Easily defeats Gen. Gates who flees
Guerrilla Warfare • New style of warfare overtakes countryside • Colonial militia appeared suddenly, struck, then disappeared • Called… • Guerrilla Warfare, hit-&-run technique • Catches Brits off-guard • Leader of these Patriot guerillas, Francis Marion • Operated out of the swamps of SC • Known as the “Swamp Fox” • Quick & extremely smart • Basis of main character in The Patriot
Patriot Victories in the Carolinas • After Cornwallis’ victory over Gates @ Camden, SC • Move north through NC • Sept. 1780- @ King’s Mountain • Brit officer & 1,000 Loyalists try to defend it • Patriots attack • Force British retreat of Mt. • Victory brings new support for Colonials • Oct. 1780- Gen. Gates is replaced by Nathaniel Greene • Splits Continental army of South in 2 • Jan 1781- Colonials under Gen. Daniel Morgan defeat Brits @ Battle of Cowpens, SC • Reunite March 1781- to take on Cornwallis at the Battle of Guilford Courthouse • Present-day Greensboro, NC • Colonials forced to retreat, but… • Losses so severe for Brits, Cornwallis leaves the Carolinas
British Retreat • April 1781- Cornwallis marches north to VA • Raids throughout the state • Nearly captures VA Governor Thomas Jefferson! • Jefferson flees on horseback just ahead of Redcoats • Washington sends Lafayette south to take on Cornwallis • Cornwallis sets up camp @ Yorktown • Awaiting orders from Clinton in NY • War in south about to come to bloody end!