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Lexington and Concord

The First Continental Congress: 3 things they decide to do; evolving question of Parliamentary authority.

  1. Suffolk Resolves sept 6 1774 Adams and the Congress approved it said that no obedience was due to the Coercive Acts
  2. they decided that the parliament in England did not have the right to tax them
  3. they decided that the parliament in England did not have the right to legislate to them

Adams-Duane Resolution

Lexington and Concord

Second Continental Congress: decide to do what? May 10, 1775 they conducted a war and voted to raise an army they chose George Washington to command the Continental Army

The Battle of Bunker Hill June 16, 1775 Bunker Hill near Boston slaughter of the redcoats the battle of Bunker Hill British forces showed encourage that wiped out the memory of their running away from Concorde two months before they kept coming and told the Americans ran out of ammunition and the English army regiments kept the help they thought there were going to beat the Americans easily and they figured out they were wrong.

Olive Branch Petition a petition to George III urging him to tell parliament because Americans still wanted to join with the British some people thought they could still be loyal to the king if they're assemblies in America could be recognized as equal to parliament they could have a common sovereign King.

Mercenaries while the Continental Congress prepared its last appeal to him his ministers negotiated for 20,000 Russian mercenaries to do what the regular troops in Boston and seem unable to do. When the Czarina refused to hire out her subjects the ministers satisfied themselves with the Hessians instead.

Thomas Paine’s Common Sense an Englishman who came to Philadelphia in January 1776 he published a piece called common sense that was read throughout the colonies it said what all Americans were waiting to be told and gave them the current they needed it said that they wanted freedom under George III and that the king was worse than the parliament it was time for the colonies to get free of England. He said that Americans would never have the rights they wanted if they were part of the British Empire. It said that Britons were only taxed by their own consent and so Americans should be to. And that they were represented in the legislative body of Parliament so the Americans should have representation as well. And that they king ruled because of heredity not because he was voted in.

John Locke’s influence/theory was based upon his political philosophy modern liberalism. He believed in separating church and state; he also believed in liberty(freedom) and the social contract (the authority of the state over an individual).

Declaration of Independence was drafted by Thomas Jefferson and its immediate application was to assert that Americans weren't titled to "a separate and equal station" among the nations of the world.

September 1774 — 55 men came to Philadelphia for a meeting at Carpenters Hall and began working on approving the "Suffolk Resolves". It was called that as they were adopted in Suffolk County, Massachusetts.

The "Suffolk Resolves" declared that no obedience was due to the Coercive Acts. It had been nine years since the Stamp Act of Congress, which those delegates voted The Parliament has no right to tax Americans. Greenville claimed that Americans were subject To Parliament because they were virtually represented in it. Virtually represented means they had no physical presence in Parliament.

Daniel Dulany; a Maryland Loyalist Politician, shredded the argument by Greenville and consequently the issue was dropped. It was later replaced by the Declaratory Act, that act assured Parliament that they have the authority but the Americans felt the words were meetings.

Suffolk Resolves sept 6 1774 Adams and the Congress approved it said that no obedience was due to the Coercive Acts

Gov. Hutchinson of Massachusetts observed first hand in January 1773 How the Colonists denied the validity Of the Parliamentary legislation. Hutchinson had always acknowledged supremacy of Parliament and had to defend his opinion against John Adams. John Adams was lawyer from Braintree and was smarter, keener than Hutchinson.

Hutchinson believed the colonies should be formed into district kingdoms like England Scotland. John Adams felt the colonies should be independent.

Benjamin Franklin came to the conclusion as early as 1766 and he waited quietly for his fellow countrymen to catch up with belief. A fellow Pennsylvanian James Wilson got his way into the politics in 1770.

In the spring of 1775, the colonists prepared to cast off the authority of Parliament. Lord Frederick North; the 2nd Earl of Guilford, wanted to return to how things were wrong in 1763 with the colonists being ruled by Parliament. His new Secretary of State for the colonies felt the same way, but the colonials did not want to go backwards. The Continental Congress challenged Parliament with congressional measures which were considered treason by Parliament. Lord North in February 1775 got a proposal passed through that stated colonists should tax themselves in lieu of the Parliamentary tax.


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On April 19, 1775 the Massachusetts militia faced the British Lexington Green and every colony trained its able-bodied men in a malicious system for defense against Native Americans or foreign invasion. On that same day the British marched on Concord intending to seize guns and gunpowder stored by the Americans.

The 2nd Congressional Congress assembled on May 10, 1775; they found themselves in a war and voted to raise a regular army which it hoped, the forces encircling Boston would form the nucleus. The Continental Congress chose Virginian George Washington as its commander of the Continental Army. Prior to his arrival in Boston, the Continental Army on June 16, 1775 slaughtered the British Army intake in the taking of Breeds Hill Adjacent to Bunker Hill.

In the battle of Bunker Hill in which the Continental Army held the Hill, the British Army continued to charge up the hill until the Americans were out of ammunition. There were still belief by some colonists that we could maintain loyalty and subordination to the King if the American assemblies could be recognized by Parliament. George III was sent a petition called the Olive Branch Petition urging him to prevent a corrupt Parliament to enslave them if they agreed to maintain loyalty and subordination.

In 1775, the ministers of Parliament tried to negotiated for 20,000 Russian troops for them to be the Americans in Boston as the British Army was unable to. The Russians Czar refused to hire out her troops in the ministers of Parliament what with Hessians instead. Hessians are Germans from the region of Hesse. The British have used the Hessians numerous times throughout history in several conflicts.

In August of 1775, King George III declared colonies in rebellion. The declaration meant stopping and seizing all ships on the high seas going to or coming from colonies during.

Thomas Paine, an Englishman a year before the Bunker Hill massacre published an article called "Common Sense". The article noted that King George III was merely playing the role as a Monarch and British politics occupy much of his time dealing with his Parliament. Paines’ facts were that the existing British Empire had no room for people who want rights that the Americans demanded.

You are from 1763 the 1776 the colonists studied the works of Locke and Harrington closely along with Thomas Gordon, John Trenchard and James Burgh; all of their works tried to define the constitutional limits of British authority.

A group in New London, Connecticut on December 10, 1765 resolved that every form of government rightfully founded originates from the consent of the people. They also resolved That Boundaries Set by the People In All Constitutions, are the only limits Which Any Officer can lawfully exercise Authority. If those boundaries are exceeded the people have the right to reassume the exercise of the authority before it is delegated to individuals.

May 15, 1776, The Virginia House of Burgesses voted to its delegates in Congress to oppose independence on the same day Congress adopted the resolution sponsored by John Adams. The resolution asked the colonies to assume complete powers of government themselves.

June 7, 1776 Richard Henry Lee at the instructions of his Virginia constituents moved for resolution declaring the colonies independent. On July 2 the resolution was adopted and two days later the Declaration of Independence was drafted by Thomas Jefferson.

Chapter 6 – War and Peace, 1776 to 1783

The Signers of the Declaration of Independence knew that their Countrymen would have to defeat the world's most formidable military and naval power and it did not look like an impossible task. The previous 10 years so the corruption and incompetence of the British political leaders; as an example on April 19, 1775 the on court made it militia of Eastern Massachusetts had routed the British Regular Army.

In 1775, the American Center next addition to Canada hoping to bring them into the revolution on their side, but the spring of 1776 it was clear the expedition failed. The emergence believed that the Canadians lacked the urge to be free and if they want did not want to help themselves, then they deserve slavery by the British. About 1/5 of the American population supported the British During the Revolutionary War; they felt England had violated their colonial rights but did not think the violations were insufferable.

Independence Day governments called on the people for military service again and again; when the call came a man how to shoulder his rifle and abandon his home and family and head for the front lines. Most preferred to go with their countrymen and shooting out the British were being shot at by the British made them committed to the revolution. The Americans were familiar with guns and knew how to use them; they have spent 150 years defending themselves against the French and Native Americans.

America's reliance on guns help them protect their crops from animals and provide their family with meat; familiarity with firearms is something the people Of the Old World lacked. Whenever the British troops attempted to sweep through the country, the men from the local farms would shoot at them ambushed them.

Gen. Washington had to struggle with the Congressional Congress trying to get them to supply him with men and arms to do the job. The Congressional Congress believed that the American militia armed with "Righteousness" would outmatch the British forces. Gen. Washington new the local militias were good at harassing the British troops were on the liable in pitched battles.

August 26, 1776 in the Battle of Long Island, Gen. Washington was badly beaten by the British Gen. William Howe; Gen. Washington avoided losing most of his forces to Gen. Howes’, as he did not take full advantages of his opportunities. Gen. Washington was pushed across New Jersey by the British and crossed the Delaware River at which time winter was upon them. Gen. Howe halted his troops for the winter. Gen. Washington learned of this and on December 25, 1776, he recrossed the Delaware River and with very little loss to his army captured 1000 Hessians under Col. Rall at Trenton. Gen. Washington showed he had daring and initiative to win the war, While General Howe chose to "fight by the rules".

General Howes' subordinate; Gen. Burgoyne was given the task to try and cut off New England from the rest of the colonies, this was an old French strategy using the Canadians to aid them in cutting off the Americans. Gen. Howe invaded Philadelphia with no resistance, as most Americans were not living in Philadelphia the time. Gen. Burgoyne made his march from Canada and had a difficult time, eventually he surrendered to the Continental troops October 17, 1777 at Saratoga

Although Canada was not our ally, France and Spain through King Louis XVI agreed to aid The Colonies and made available for them to purchase $185,000 of munitions. America could not have produced munitions as we were not an industrialized country at this time. Benjamin Franklin was sent to France by Congress to seek their support; France provided support as long as the Americans took most of the burden.

February 1778, France sign to treaties one of Amity and Commerce which recognized the United States and the two countries agreed to help each other commercially. The second treaty was to maintain the "liberty sovereignty and independence of the United States." France also renounce all future possessions of the Bermuda Islands in any part of North America east of the Mississippi.

Spain would enter the war in June 1779 as an ally of France not the United States; this caused the British Army to fight on two different continents and several fronts.

After the defeat at Saratoga, Gen. Howe resigned and was replaced by Gen. Henry Clinton; his orders were to shift the British offense of to the south and pursue policy of attrition in the North. During 1779 he recovered Georgia and by May 1780 he had taken trolls in South Carolina and its garrison of 5000 men. He then left Lord Cornwallis in command of 8000 men to continue the southern campaign, he headed north to take care of the French expedition in Newport Rhode Island and the British had occupied Newport since 1776.

Lord Cornwallis continued North much slower than Gen. Clinton anticipated, he was initially successful and afflicted the seats on the Americans in Camden South Carolina August 16, 1780.

December 1780 Gen. Washington sent Gen. Nathaniel Greene; his ablest subordinate, to help the worker resistance in the south. Gen. Greene struck Cornwallis numerous times, quickly and then withdrawal before Cornwallis could use this for me against him. Gen. Greene cut supplies off to Cornwallis by having further south forcing Cornwallis northward to Virginia. Gen. Washington and his troops along with the French isolator Cornwallis and forced him to surrender on October 17, 1781. Cornwallis had more than 7000 men under his command at the time of his surrender.

News reached King George III and he did not believe it American French Spanish and British diplomats were communicating back and forth across the English Channel with proposals to settle this diplomatically. The American peace commissioners Benjamin Franklin John J John Adams were instructed by Congress to insist only on the dependence and to follow the advice of the French of everything else. The three men took the liberty of violating their instructions for negotiating what amounted to a separate piece that France accepted gracefully and by doing so the United States on September 3, 1783 signed a treaty with Canada for our northern border which still holds today. The western boundary was the Mississippi River and the southern boundary was the 31st parallel. United States did not get the right to freely trade British ports, Benjamin Franklin had argued for this but was unable to got it. What America did get was enough space to prove themselves and their beliefs.