Unit 2 pt. 8 - IB-History-of-the

Chapter 8
America Secedes
From the Empire
1775 - 1783
Emanuel Leutze's stylized depiction of
Washington Crossing the Delaware (1851)
April – May 1775
• 20,000 militiamen arrive in Boston after
Lexington & Concord
• May 10, 1775 – 2nd Continental Congress met in
– No defined support for independence
– Americans still hoped to get London to address their
Congress Drafts George Washington
• GW chosen to lead “army”
moving to Boston
– VA planter & member of
– Important choice but there were
many doubts
• Had combat experience 20 years
• Never rose above rank of colonel
• Largest command was only 1,200
• Not a military genius (lost more
battles than he won)
– Washington’s strengths: strong
leader, strength of character,
moral force, people trusted and
were willing to follow him
Second Continental Congress
• Decisions: hired George Washington
– Political, not military, decision
• Army was mainly from New England; appointed
Virginian to command to balance sections
– Wealthy man (meaning he wasn’t after $$$)
• Declaration of the Causes & Necessities
for Taking Up Arms - when George III
rejected Olive Branch Petition
• Galloway Plan - keeping colonies in the
empire w/ self-governing rights
King George III
Bunker Hill & Hessian Hirelings
• April 1775 – July 1776:
inconsistent war b/w BR &
– Americans affirmed loyalty to
king while raising armies and
fighting BR soldiers
• May 1775: Ticonderoga &
Crown Point
– Americans under Ethan Allen
& Benedict Arnold captured
BR forts with important
gunpowder & artillery
Bunker Hill & Hessian Hirelings
• June 1775: Bunker (Breed’s) Hill
– British strategy- split New England
from other colonies (unsuccessful)
– Colonists took hill overlooking
– BR should have flanked Americans
– Instead, BR charged up hill with
• Americans firmly entrenched with
• Americans mow down BR until
gunpowder ran out and they were
forced to retreat
• BR lose 1,100 men; Americans lost
– Called Battle of Bunker Hill but
most fighting took place at Breed’s
Bunker Hill & Hessian Hirelings
• June 1775: Olive Branch Petition
– pledged loyalty and asked King to intercede w/ Parliament to
secure peace and protection of colonial rights
– Sent by Continental Congress to king
– Americans professed loyalty to crown and asked for end of
– After Bunker Hill, London gov’t would not consider this
• August 1775: king declared colonies in rebellion
– Made colonists’ actions treason (punishment is death)
• September 1775: king finalized deal to hire Hessians
– Shocked colonists (king bringing in foreign troops)
– Hessians were good soldiers, although many deserted to stay in
America for land
The Abortive Conquest of Canada
• Fall 1775: colonists invaded
– Americans believed (wrongly)
that FR wanted to kick BR out of
– Canada would become 14th
colony and deprive BR of
launching point for invasions of
– Contradicted colonists’ claims
they were fighting defensive war
– French had been treated well by
BR (Quebec Act) and did not
want to overthrow BR in Canada
The Abortive Conquest of Canada
• March 1776: BR forced to evacuate Boston
• 2 American victories in South
– Feb: Moore’s Creek Bridge (fighting Loyalists)
– June: Charleston harbor against invading BR fleet
• Moves toward independence came slowly
– Loyalty to BR deeply ingrained
– Colonial unity was poor
– Open rebellion was dangerous
Thomas Paine Preaches Common Sense
• Events that moved Amer toward independence
came slowly
– Harsh BR attacks (burning of towns)
– Hiring of Hessians
– January 1776: Common Sense – “no country
should be controlled by an island”
One of the most influential pamphlets ever written
Thomas Paine came from BR only 1 year earlier
Sold 120,000 copies in only a few months
King was “the Royal Brute of GB”
Called for independence AND the creation of a new
gov’t – a republic
– Power comes from people, not the king
– All public officials should be responsible to the
– Supported by colonists who saw king’s actions after
1763 as conspiracy to take away their liberties
– The Crisis – “These are the times that try men’s
souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot
will shrink from the service of their country “
(check Ch. Intro)
Paine and the Idea of “Republicanism”
• Colonists’ gov’t prepared them for republicanism
– Colonists practiced with town meetings & annual
– Committees of correspondence
– America had no fixed hierarchy of power
• Republican virtue
– Sacrifice personal self-interest for the public good
Jefferson’s “Explanation” of Independence
• June 7, 1776: RH Lee (Virginia)
moved for independence
– “These colonies are and of right ought
to be free and independent states”
• July 2, 1776: Lee’s resolution
passed after much debate
– Needed a more formal declaration and
• June 1776: committee prepared
formal declaration
– TJ wrote it (“world’s greatest editorial”)
– July 4, 1776 it was formally approved
by Congress
• “all men are created equal”
• “natural right” that King George had
violated, so colonists were justified in
The Declaration of Independence
Jefferson “borrows” many ideas from John Locke in writing the Declaration of
The Declaration of Independence has three main goals:
to explain the political philosophy of the colonists
to list the grievances of the revolutionists
to formally declare their separation from Britain
Locke’s Influence
Reasoned that while the state (gov’t) is supreme, it
is bound to follow “natural laws” based on the rights
that people have simply because they are human.
He argued that sovereignty ultimately resides with the people rather than with the
Furthermore, citizens had a right and an obligation to revolt against whatever
gov’t failed to protect their rights.
Impact of the Declaration:
Established colonies as rebels, not BR subjects trying to reconcile
Allowed America to realistically request foreign aid
Influenced many others in struggle for freedom in the future
“We must indeed all hang together, or,
most assuredly we shall all hang
John Trumbull, 1817
Patriots and Loyalists
Loyalists (“Tories”)
People in America loyal to the crown
16% of population
Upper classes, generally older
People who worked for the king in colonies
Anglican church members (except in Virginia)
Strong in NYC, Charleston, Quaker Penn, NJ
Patriots (“Whigs”)
People who fought for revolution
Patriots fought not only BR soldiers, but also Loyalists during the war
Generally younger colonists
Strongest in New England (Presbyterians & Congregationalists, strong tradition of
self-gov’t, support for mercantilism weakest)
Revolution supported by only minority of the population (many
were neutral)
Needed support of citizens
BR didn’t do this well
Patriots used “political education” to get support of undecided colonists
Patriots and Loyalists
Persecution of Loyalists
Mild before Decl of Indep (tarring & feathering)
Harsher after Decl of Indep (viewed as traitors by patriots)
Persectued, imprisoned, hanged
80,000 driven out or fled (estates confiscated to pay for war)
50,000 fought for BR
General Washington at Bay
• March 1776: BR evacuated Boston & used NY as HQ
(many loyalists, good port, central location)
• Summer-Fall 1776: disaster for Americans
– Battle of Long Island: Americans retreat in panic
– BR General Howe lets Washington retreat instead of stopping his army
• Washington heads into NJ
– December 26, 1776: captured 1,000 Hessians sleeping off Christmas
celebrations at Battle of Trenton after crossing Delaware River at night
– January 1777: defeated BR forces at Princeton
Emanuel Leutze's stylized depiction of
Washington Crossing the Delaware (1851)
Flag had not been
designed yet
Washington would have
overturned the boat!
No ice on the
Delaware River
Washington crossed
at night, so there
would have been
no light!
Burgoyne’s Blundering Invasion
• 1777 – BR plan to capture Hudson
River Valley
– Would cut off New England
– General Burgoyne would come S
from Canada; Howe would come
N from NY
– General Benedict Arnold stops the
BR advances
• Holds Burgoyne off until winter sets
• Burgoyne’s 7,000 troops moved S
slowly & were attacked repeatedly by
– Howe instead goes S to attack
Philadelphia (hoped to destroy
Washington’s army)
Burgoyne’s Blundering Invasion
• Howe settled in for winter at
• Washington makes camp at
Valley Forge, 20 miles NW of
– Miserable winter, men freezing
– Baron von Steuben turned them
into a professional army
• October 17, 1777: Saratoga
– Burgoyne forced to surrender to
Washington and Lafayette look over the troops at
General Horatio Gates
Valley Forge.
– Strengthened rebel cause
– Allowed FR to enter war on
American side
– Turning point!
Revolution in Diplomacy?
• FR & America seemed ideal partners
• FR:
– Wanted to get back at BR for loss in 7 Years’ War
– BR would not be a world power w/out the colonies
• America: needed help against BR
• Continental Congress wanted to end colonialism & mercantilism
– Wanted no political connection, no military connection, only a commercial
– Benjamin Franklin negotiated treaty w/FR
– Feb. 1778: Franco-American Alliance
• Official recognition from FR of America’s independence
• America received important military aid from FR (guns, troops, navy, $$$,
• Both would fight until America received independence & both agreed to terms w/BR
• FR declared war on BR
• 1779: SP & HOL enter war against BR
• Armed Neutrality organized: demanded respect from BR for freedom
of seas (passive hostility)
Blow and Counterblow
1778: change in BR strategy
– Before: blockade & control coast w/powerful navy
– After: FR navy threatened blockade
– BR evacuated Philly & concentrated on NY
– Washington uses army to hold BR at NY
• Late 1780: General Benedict Arnold turned TRAITOR!
Felt he was not appreciated
Promised to sell out West Point
Plan detected at last minute and stopped
Arnold fled to BR
• New BR plan: take S first (where Loyalists were strong)
then move N
– Overrun Georgia, then SC surrendered
• Many Indians fought w/BR (to stop American expansion)
Iroquois Nation divided
Chief Joseph Brant led pro-BR Iroquois
Attacked Penn & NY until stopped by Americans
Treaty of Ft. Stanwix (forced to sign, gave away most of
their land)
Land & Sea Frontiers
• Kentucky
– Lexington named for Mass. town where fighting began
– Louisville named for FR King Louis XVI
“I have not yet
begun to fight”
• BR scattered forts in W are vulnerable
• American navy: a few small ships led by daring officers
– John Paul Jones
– Never made a dent in BR navy
– Main contribution was hurting BR merchant shipping
• American privateers: privately owned armed ships (legal pirates)
Authorized by Congress to attack enemy merchant shipping
Out for patriotism & profit (kept what they stole)
Brought in gold, hurt the enemy, raised morale
Led BR merchants to pressure Parliament to end war
Yorktown and the Final Curtain
• 1780-1781: darkest period of war for America
– Continental dollars almost worthless (inflation)
– Gov’t bankrupt
– Mutiny & despair prevailed
• Cornwallis marched into a trap at Yorktown
– Unsuccessful operations in VA
– Fell back to Yorktown (Chesapeake Bay) to wait for
supplies (but FR controlled the seas at this point)
– Joint American-FR operation at Yorktown
– Cornwallis trapped at sea by FR & at land by Washington
– October 1781: Cornwallis & 7,000 men surrender
• FR had provided the essential sea power & ½ of troops
for America
** David Bushnell- The Turtle, first sub, 8 small
windows; egg-shaped; 1 person, 3 mph; submerged
for 30 minutes.
– Used once during Revolution, targeted HMS Eagle
Final Curtain
- Yorktown (Oct. 19, 1781)- George Washington & Cornwallis
Surrender of Cornwallis at Yorktown (John Trumbull, 1797). On the right is the American flag,
on the left is the white flag of the French monarchy. Despite the painting's title, Cornwallis
(claiming illness) was not present and is not depicted. Washington is on horseback in the right
background; because the British commander was absent, military protocol dictated that
Washington have a subordinate—-in this case Benjamin Lincoln-—accept the surrender.
Peace at Paris
• King George planned to continue fighting (still had 54,000 troops in
• Fighting continued for a year
– Washington kept army in the field and the states together or else an acceptable peace
treaty might never have been signed
• BR public sick of war (losses around the world)
• March 1782: Lord North’s Tory gov’t collapsed
– Replaced by Whigs (anti-king, anti-war)
• 3 Americans in Paris to negotiate peace
– B. Franklin, J. Adams, J. Jay
– Congress instructed them to consult w/FR but they wanted to make the best treaty for the
US, not FR
• FR wanted independent US, but not a powerful one
• Tried to confine the US to east of Allegheny Mountains
• SP also wanted area east of Alleghenies
– John Jay believed FR were about to betray US, so made secret communications w/BR,
who quickly agreed
– 1783: final Treaty of Paris signed
Treaty of Paris 1783
• Results of Treaty
– U.S.
• BR recognizes independence
• Generous boundaries
– Mississippi on West
– Great Lakes to N
– To SP Florida in S
• Kept control of important
fishing areas in Newfoundland
– Britain
• cedes Florida to Spain
• Loyalists not persecuted in US
• Congress would recommend
that their confiscated property
be restored
• States would pay debts to BR
– Debt issues not carried out in
future by US, leading to future
conflicts w/BR
Painting by Benjamin West depicting (from left
to right) John Jay, John Adams, Benjamin
Franklin, Henry Laurens, and William Temple
Franklin. The British commissioners refused to
pose, and the picture was never finished.
A New Nation Legitimized
• Why did BR give America such a good deal???
– Wanted to break Franco-American alliance
– Whig gov’t (only in power for a few months) more friendly to
America than Tories
• Wanted to repair the relationship, reopen trade, prevent future wars
• FR formally approved Treaty of Paris
– Wanted to bring costly war to an end
• America is the only country that gained from the
– BR defeated
– FR incurred massive debt  FR Revolution
– America gained independence and their country
Personality Profiles
• ** Major Andre- everybody liked him (even G. Wash), plans found
in boots
Personality Profiles
• John Hancock – “so King George can see it w/o his
– smuggler/merchant believed he should be commander in chief
• ** Patrick Henry – “Give me liberty or give me death”
• Alexander Hamilton- born in West Indies; G.
Washington’s aide
Patrick Henry
Alexander Hamilton

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