REVOLUTION MODULE




Learning Objectives:

1. How was a resistance movement transformed into a coalition in favor of independence?

2. Would you have been a Loyalist, Patriot, or Neutral? Why?

3. Why did the patriots (a small force) win and the British (the most powerful military in the world) lose the Revolutionary War?

4. What lessons, if any, does the British experience provide for America in 2012?



The American Revolution required patriot leaders to do three things:
  • Establish a coalition in favor of independence
  • Gain foreign recognition.
  • Triumph over the British army



First Continental Congress (Philadelphia, Sept 1774)

First Continental Congress (Massachusetts Historical Society)
http://www.masshist.org/revolution/congress1.php

First Continental Congress:

1. Declaration of Rights and Grievances (Library of Congress)
http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/timeline/amrev/rebelln/rights.html

Colonists would obey normal laws of British Parliament
Colonists would not obey taxes in disguise (like Townshend Duties)

2. Continental Association: boycott of English goods (Library of Congress)
http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/timeline/amrev/rebelln/assoc.html

3. . Committees of Observation & Inspection
Committee members (7000) assigned to monitor boycott,
Became, in effect, the local leaders of the American resistance.



Provincial conventions:
Independence was being won at the local level, without formal acknowledgement and without much bloodshed.

Popularly elected congresses took over government in each colony

These conventions

  • a. elected delegates to the Second Continental Congress
  • b. organized militia units
  • c. gathered arms and ammunition
  • d. collected taxes



Choosing sides

1. Patriots (40% of population)

Americans who were against the British

To win, Patriots had to neutralize or defeat potential internal enemies.

2. Neutrals (40% of population)

Those who tried to remain in the middle

  • Sincere pacifists (Quakers)
  • Those who supported whoever controlled their area
  • Those who simply wanted to be left alone

3. Loyalists (20% of population)

Loyalists were Americans who remained loyal to the British:

  • British–appointed government officials
  • Merchants whose trade depended on British connections
  • Anglican (Church of England) ministers

100,000 loyalists left America, many to Canada

4. African–Americans

Slaves sought freedom by supporting the British.
British eventually took away 55,000 slaves
Colonies with highest slave %—less support for revolution.

5. Indians

Both British and patriots tried to keep Indians neutral
Indians bitter at aggressive expansionism of colonists
Most taking sides supported British—less threat than Patriots


The War itself

British military planners made three erroneous assumptions:

1. Americans would not stand up to professional troops

2. English could fight a conventional war as they would in Europe

3. Military victory would be sufficient to win the struggle



Map (a static one of the war):
http://wps.ablongman.com/wps/media/objects/1483/1518969/DIVI101.jpg

EDSITEment interactives
http://www.teachingamericanhistory.org/neh/interactives/americanrevolution/

British r Coming. Pls RT! What if Twitter had been around during the American Revolution? (Foreign Policy)
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/07/03/british_r_coming_please_rt




Revolution Chronology:

1. Battles of Lexington and Concord (April 1775).

Lexington and Concord (Massachusetts Historical Society)
http://www.masshist.org/revolution/lexington.php

Battles of Lexington and Concord (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/apr19.html

Paul Revere's ride
http://www.bostonteapartyship.com/paul-reveres-ride

Paul Revere's Ride (Finding Dulcinea, On This Day)
http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/on-this-day/March-April-08/Paul-Revere-Begins-Midnight-Ride.html

One if by land, two if by sea (Paul Revere Heritage Project)
http://www.paul-revere-heritage.com/one-if-by-land-two-if-by-sea.html

Battles of Lexington and Concord (Animated Map)
http://www.revolutionarywaranimated.com/index.php/lexington-and-concord

British Battle account
http://www.britishbattles.com/concord-lexington.htm

Good map in the Wikipedia account of the battle
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battles_of_Lexington_and_Concord



2. Battle of Bunker Hill (June 1775)

Battle of Bunker Hill (Massachusetts Historical Society)
http://www.masshist.org/revolution/bunkerhill.php

Battle of Bunker Hill (Animated Map)
http://www.revolutionarywaranimated.com/index.php/bunker-hill

Grave marker at Old North Church in Boston reads as follows:
"Major Pitcairn, a British officer, fatally wounded while rallying the Royal Marines at Bunker Hill, was carried from the battlefield to the boats on the back of his son, who kissed him and returned to duty."

British Battle account
http://www.britishbattles.com/bunker-hill.htm

British Account of Bunker Hill
http://teachingamericanhistory.org/library/index.asp?document=870



3. Boston siege

Patriot troops surrounded British in Boston for next year



4. Second Continental Congress

Second Continental Congress (Massachusetts Historical Society)
http://www.masshist.org/revolution/congress2.php

Convened in May 1775 at Philadelphia

a. Became the intercolonial government during American Revolution
b. Authorized the printing of money
c. Established a committee to supervise relations with foreign countries
d. Created Continental Army

e. Washington appointed commanding general

Washington from the South

Washington as Commander (Massachusetts Historical Society)
http://www.masshist.org/revolution/washington.php

Washington's Letter to the Continental Congress (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/mar24.html

Spy Letters of the American Revolution -- Clements Library, Ann Arbor, Michigan
http://clements.umich.edu/exhibits/online/spies/

Note: George Washington named Britain's greatest ever foe (Telegraph)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/9204961/George-Washington-named-Britains-greatest-ever-foe.html

See also:

Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms
http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/congress-issues-a-declaration-on-the-causes-and-necessity-of-taking-up-arms

Olive Branch Petition
http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/congress-adopts-olive-branch-petition
http://www.masshist.org/revolution/doc-viewer.php?old=1&mode=nav&item_id=995

Threat of Bioterrorism in 1775
http://www.archives.gov/historical-docs/todays-doc/index.html?dod-date=1204#2010



5. Continental army

a. Never numbered more than 18,500 men
b. Included black (5,000) troops
c. Short–term militiamen helped in their own area
d. Women traveled with the army

Who: wives and widows of poor soldiers
Doing what: cooks, nurses, and launderers

Creating a Continental Army (Library of Congress)
http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/timeline/amrev/contarmy/

Spy Letters of the American Revolution (University of Michigan)
http://www2.si.umich.edu/spies/index-about.html
My Website Spotlight blog post
http://thelearningprofessor.blogspot.com/2011/10/website-spotlight-spy-letters-of.html



6. Thomas Paine: Common Sense (Jan 1776)

a. Wildly popular book
b. Helped Americans accept the idea of separation from Britain
c. Advocated creation of an independent republic
d. Downplayed benefits of links to mother country
e. Insisted Britain had exploited colonies unmercifully
f. Americans hated Parliament, but thought King was sympathetic
g. Paine disagreed:
h. King was a royal brute
i. King only pretended to care for the colonist's welfare

Thomas Paine: Citizen of the World (BBC)
http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/british/empire_seapower/paine_01.shtml

Celebrating Thomas Paine (PBS)
http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/06122009/profile2.html
Program Transcript
http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/06122009/transcript2.html

Thomas Paine (National Portrait Gallery exhibit)
http://www.npg.si.edu/exhibit/paine/



7. PBS video LIBERTY! The American Revolution

Play "The Road to Revolution Game"
http://www.pbs.org/ktca/liberty/road.html
Class should try to navigate its way to independence!

Liberty! The American Revolution (PBS)
http://www.pbs.org/ktca/liberty/
My Website Spotlight blog post
http://thelearningprofessor.blogspot.com/2012/06/website-spotlight-liberty-american.html



8. Religion and the American Revolution (Library of Congress)
http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/religion/rel03.html

Read the Introductory paragraphs
Read "Resistance to Tyranny a Christian Duty"
Read "Revolution Understood in Scriptural Terms"
Read "A Fighting Parson"

Invoking God.
Us in 1776.
Muslims in current Iraq and Afghanistan.





ALL OF THE ABOVE TOOK PLACE BEFORE ANY DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE

9. Declaration of Independence (July 4, 1776)

Declaration of Independence (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/jul04.html

Congress Declares Independence from Britain (Finding Dulcinea, On This Day)
http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/on-this-day/July-August-08/On-this-Day--Continental-Congress-Declares-Independence-from-Britain.html

a. Noted committee members: Jefferson, Adams, Franklin

Thomas Jefferson (Finding Dulcinea)
http://www.findingdulcinea.com/features/profiles/j/thomas-jefferson.html

Thomas Jefferson (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/apr13.html

Abigail Adams: “Remember the Ladies” Letter to John Adams (1776) (Milestone Documents)
https://www.milestonedocuments.com/documents/view/abigail-adamss-letter-to-john-adams-1776

Both John Adams and Thomas Jefferson died exactly 50 years later (July 4, 1776)

John Adams and Thomas Jefferson Die (On This Day, Finding Dulcinea)
http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/on-this-day/July-August-08/On-this-Day--John-Adams-and-Thomas-Jefferson-Die.html

Intimate Enemies: Adams and Jefferson (American Heritage)
http://www.americanheritage.com/content/intimate-enemies?page=show

Friends At Twilight: Adams and Jefferson (American Heritage)
http://www.americanheritage.com/content/friends-twilight?page=show


Jefferson was chosen to draft the Declaration

He wrote well
He had recently drafted the Virginia state constitution

b. Colonists no longer accept legitimacy of Parliament

c. Declaration concentrated on King George III as the villain

The King had attempted to destroy representative government
The King oppressed Americans by excessive force

d. All men are created equal: principle to live up to

e. Signers of the Declaration at great risk: treason.
John Hancock's big signature: "King won't need his spectacles"

f. Founding.com (A Project of the Claremont Institute)
Go to "The Declaration" along the top of HOME page
http://www.founding.com/the_declaration_of_i/
Three annotated versions are provided: click on the "Historical Context" version.
http://www.founding.com/the_declaration_of_i/pageid.2418/default.asp
Read carefully through the complete text of the Declaration of Independence



10. Lineup of opponents during the war itself:

a. War took place on several levels

Regular troops: British against Patriots
Irregular troops: Partisan warfare (Patriots versus Loyalists)

b. Fighting moved chronologically from North to South:
  • New England
  • Middle colonies
  • Southern colonies



Note sure where to put this:

Selections from the diary of Joseph Plumb Martin
http://www.ushistory.org/march/other/martindiary.htm



11. Patriot winter camp: Valley Forge

Valley Forge (National Park Service)
http://www.nps.gov/vafo/historyculture/people.htm

Valley Forge (US History.org)
http://www.ushistory.org/valleyforge/index.html

Tremendous suffering

Time for needed training (Baron von Steuben)

General Von Steuben (National Park Service)
http://www.nps.gov/vafo/historyculture/vonsteuben.htm

Valley Forge (Library of Congress)
Click on "Revolutionary War, The Turning Point, 1777-1778"
http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/timeline/amrev/turning/turning.html
Then look at the following document:
"Washington Describes the Continental Army at Valley Forge, Winter 1777-1778"

Continental army
a. Never numbered more than 18,500 men
b. Included black (5,000) troops
c. Short–term militiamen helped in their own area
d. Women traveled with the army

Who: wives and widows of poor soldiers
Doing what: cooks, nurses, and launderers

Creating a Continental Army (Library of Congress)
http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/timeline/amrev/contarmy/

Spy Letters of the American Revolution (University of Michigan)
http://www2.si.umich.edu/spies/index-about.html
My Website Spotlight blog post
http://thelearningprofessor.blogspot.com/2011/10/website-spotlight-spy-letters-of.html



12. Treason of Benedict Arnold (21 September 1780)

Officers developed intense commitment to the revolutionary cause

Arnold betrayed the cause (History.com)
http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/benedict-arnold-commits-treason

Arnold bio sketch
http://www.ushistory.org/valleyforge/served/arnold.html
http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/benedict-arnold-american-traitor-born

Peopling the Past: Benedict Arnold (Colonial Williamsburg)
http://www.history.org/Foundation/journal/Autumn10/arnold.cfm



13. Washington "crossed the Delaware" River

Battle of Trenton
http://www.britishbattles.com/battle-trenton.htm

Attacked Trenton and Princeton
These victories cheered American spirits

Battle of Trenton (Animated map)
http://www.revolutionarywaranimated.com/trentonprinceton



14. Battle of Saratoga

Battle of Saratoga (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/sep19.html

a. British invaded New York to cut off New England from rest of colonies
b. British General Burgoyne surrendered 6,000 troops
c. American victory led to French recognition of American independence

Saratoga (Animated Map)
http://www.revolutionarywaranimated.com/index.php/saratogaticonderoga-the-turning-point

Benedict Arnold's Leg
http://www.pbs.org/ktca/liberty/popup_arnoldsleg.html

British Battle Account
http://www.britishbattles.com/battle-saratoga.htm



15. Franco–American Treaty of Alliance (1778)

French Alliance (Historian of the State Department)
http://history.state.gov/milestones/1776-1783/FrenchAlliance

Treaty of Alliance with France 1778 (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/feb06.html

Treaty of alliance brought France into war on American side:

a. Americans had mixed feelings
b. France had been major enemy in past
c. French were Catholic
d. But French were anxious to avenge their defeat in the French and Indian War

French help was critically important to the overall Patriot victory against the British.

See Also:

Marquis de Lafayette
http://www.nps.gov/vafo/historyculture/lafayette.htm



16. Fighting moved to the south

British had taken key cities in the North:
  • Boston
  • Newport, Rhode Island
  • New York City (their headquarters for most of the war)
  • Philadelphia

But still the British were not stopping the Patriots

British thought they would have better success in the South

Southern Campaign (Animated map)
http://www.revolutionarywaranimated.com/index.php/the-southern-campaign-cowpens-camden-guilford-court-house



17. Charleston (South Carolina)

Results were the reverse of Saratoga.

Americans surrendered 5,000 troops to the British.



18. Nathanael Greene

Nathanael Greene (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/aug07.html

Nathanael Greene (US History.org)
http://www.ushistory.org/valleyforge/served/greene.html

Nathanael Greene: Key Patriot general in South (Library of Congress)
http://www.loc.gov/teachers/classroommaterials/presentationsandactivities/presentations/timeline/amrev/south/greene.html

He was a Quaker.

He operated effectively against the British militarily.

But he was much more than just a military man.

He showed tolerance for the problems of loyalists and Indians.



19. British Surrender at Yorktown (1781)

Siege of Yorktown

Cornwallis Surrender at Yorktown (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/oct19.html

a. British General Cornwallis trapped on Tidewater peninsula
http://www.britishbattles.com/battle-yorktown.htm

b. American and French armies surrounded him on land.

c. French navy defeated British rescue effort off Chesapeake Bay

d. Great American victory.
Though wait a minute! Did killer mosquitoes cause the British defeat?
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/18/AR2010101803877.html?hpid=topnews

e. Yorktown (Animated Map)
http://www.revolutionarywaranimated.com/index.php/yorktown

f. Joseph Plumb Martin at Yorktown
http://historymatters.gmu.edu/d/6597/

Voices in Time: New Nation:

The World Turned Upside Down lyrics
http://www.contemplator.com/england/worldtur.html

The World Turned Upside Down music
http://youtu.be/iUcH0Of_sxs

The World Turned Upside Down music (Fifes and Druns)
http://youtu.be/uFSwkIgN2oM



20. Peace Treaty of Paris (1783)

Treaty of Paris Signed (Finding Dulcinea, On This Day)
http://www.findingdulcinea.com/news/on-this-day/September-October-08/On-this-Day--Treaty-of-Paris-Signed--Ending-Revolutionary-War.html

American diplomats: Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and John Jay
Won a tremendous settlement for America

Continental Congress Approved Preliminary Articles of Peace, 15 April 1783 (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/apr15.html

Treaty of Paris Signed in Paris, 3 September 1783 (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/sep03.html

Continental Congress Ratified the Treaty of Paris, 14 January 1784 (Today in History, Library of Congress)
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/today/jan14.html

Great map:
http://images.classwell.com/mcd_xhtml_ebooks/2005_world_history/images/mcd_awh2005_0618376798_p642_f2.jpg

a. England recognized American independence
b. Britain kept Canada—but reduced to its original boundaries before Quebec Act
c. U.S. got all territory east of the Mississippi
d. Britain ignored territorial rights of its Indian allies
e. French GOT NOTHING out of the peace treaty

See also:

England’s Vietnam: The American Revolution (American Heritage)
http://www.americanheritage.com/content/england%E2%80%99s-vietnam-american-revolution?page=show