Archive for History

The American Revolution

The American Revolution took place in end of the 18th century. This revolution consisted of thirteen colonies in North America that wanted to break free from the British Empire.

The revolution began with the Americans being overtaxed. Tired of being taxed without representation in the British Parliament, the colonists banded together and rejected the authority of Great Britain. They called the first meeting the Continental Congress and followed this declaration by expelling the royal officials. By 1774, each colony had its own congress that managed the affairs of that region.

Determined to squash the rebellion, King George III sent combat troops to reimpose British rule. Determined to be a free and independent nation, the colonists formed the Second Contenintal Congress and formed militia groups. In 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence and the Congress adopted it officially on July 4. This was the beginning of the United States of America.

Beginning an armed conflict with Britain was challenging, but France and Spain provided supplies and ammunition to the revolutionaries. The British Royal Navy began troop movements by capturing New York City. While the colonists were able to control the countryside, they were no match for the navy. The British army tried to defeat the colonists inland, but were defeated numerous times. The first major victory for the colonists was the Battle of Saratoga.

While Great Britain was confident in their ability to defeat the colonists in a battle, they were not matched for several reasons. The British army wore brightly colored uniforms that were easy to spot and they also marched in formation when traveling. The colonists spread out and hit behind trees, knowing that any army would have difficulty seeing them. Also, Great Britain was fighting on a foreign land. The British soldiers were not motivated, leading Great Britain to hire German soldiers also known as Hessians. The colonists, on the other hand, were determined to win their independence and fought fiercely.

"The surrender at Saratoga" shows Ge...

“The surrender at Saratoga” shows General Daniel Morgan in front of a French de Vallière 4-pounder. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After their victory at Saratoga, France openly entered the war and threatened to invade Great Britain. Spain also became more involved in the revolution and drove the British army from Florida. Trying to win a war on three fronts was disastrous for Great Britain and they were losing the war. A siege outside of Chesapeake Bay forced the British army to surrender in 1781 at Yorktown, Virginia. While fighting continued through 1782, the official conflict ended in 1781. The Treaty of Paris was signed in 1783. This effectively ended the American Revolution and recognized the United States as being a free and independent nation.

The American Revolution marks an important time in the history of the United States. Although this revolution only involved the 13 original colonies, the Declaration of Independence formed the basis for all proceeding state documents. This was also the first time that the colonists had their own representatives and leaders, without any outside influences. While the American Revolution took place over a very short period of time, it was a critical part in American history and is still remembered today.

History behind 4th of July Celebrations

Today is the 4th Of July. Elsewhere in the world, it may be the date associated with significant or insignificant events and happenings. However, for the United States Of America, this day and date marks an occasion which is of utmost significance to the Americans. This was the day back in the turbulent year of 1776 when the 13 colonies of America, under the leadership of Thomas Jefferson and other greats, officially declared themselves to be independent from the rule of Britain. It was on the 4th of July when the historic document ‘The Declaration Of Independence‘ was finally approved by the Second Continental Congress.

English: "The Declaration of Independence...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The origins of the affair can be rooted to the resolution moved by noted statesman Richard Henry Lee in June 1776. In his resolution, Lee had urged the 13 colonies to separate legally from the British reign in the country. Accordingly, on 2nd of July, the Second Continental Congress comprising of John Hancock, Benjamin Franklin and Jefferson began to revise over the original resolution. The historic document was then drafted by the likes of Jefferson, John Adams and Franklin. It was finalized on the 4th of July and this was the day which was subsequently termed as the Independence Day for the country.

Over the years, the real integrity of the historical records has been futilely debated. Historians have questioned if this was indeed the day when the document had been approved. However, soon, people have begun to believe the day as the official Independence Day. A century and a half later after the event, the government of the country declared the 4th of July as an office holiday for the countrymen. The proud Americans celebrate this grand occasion by attending fairs, cultural events like celebrity performances, feasts, cultural programs and more. There are also rousing speeches and lectures dedicated to the history of the event.