Major Battle of the American Revolution Lexington/Concord Bunker Hill Trenton Oriskany Saratoga Yorktown
Lexington and Concord April 19, 1775 British went to arrest Sam Adams and John Hancock in Lexington Paul Revere’s famous ride 70+ Massachusetts militia engaged the 900 British
Bunker Hill June 16, 1775 The British took possession of both Breed’s Hill and Bunker Hill. They had won the battle, but at a terrible cost: out of 2,200 troops, 268 British soldiers and officers had been killed; another 828 were wounded. The Americans also suffered heavy casualties with 115 killed and 305 wounded. The British army’s military victory at the battle of Bunker Hill was a moral victory for the colonists, however. Colonists throughout America realized that the conflict was no longer just a rebellion of Bostonians and other Massachusetts colonists against British occupation. They had proved to themselves that, united, they had the ability and the character to confront the superior force of the British army. The cost of British victory was so great that serious doubts were raised about English leadership; many now understood that war with the colonies would be hard, long, and expensive to both sides.
Battle of Trenton December 26, 1776 The Continental Army, led by General George Washington, crossed the Delaware in December 1776, and headed for the enemy's barracks in Trenton, where they defeated Hessian mercenaries. On January 2, a second battle was fought that held back the British, while the main Continental forces marched to Princeton. The battle of Trenton marks a turning point in the war in America's favor.
Battle of Oriskany August 6, 1777 When the Revolutionary War broke out, the New York Rebels recognized the importance of the Oneida Carry and the fertile Mohawk River Valley. They rebuilt the ruined Fort Stanwix at the urging of General Philip Schuyler of Albany. Colonel Peter Gansevoort took command of the fort in the spring of 1777 and garrisoned it with about 700 New York and Massachusetts infantry soldiers. In July 1777, General Barry St. Leger left Canada and arrived at Oswego, New York. St. Leger was ordered to move east and join Burgoyne. He left Oswego on July 26 in command of a force of 700 to 800 British regulars, Canadians, Mohawk Valley Tories (commanded by Sir John Johnson and Colonel John Butler), and Hanau (German) mercenaries. These soldiers were joined by approximately 800 American Indian Tories, mostly from the Mohawk and Seneca tribes, under the command of Joseph Brant. Fort Stanwix, which had been renamed Fort Schuyler by the Rebels, blocked St. Leger's path. St. Leger's advance troops arrived at the fort on August 2nd and decided it was too strong and well-garrisoned to attack. After Gansevoort rejected his demand to surrender on August 3, St. Leger prepared for a siege.
Turning Point of the American Revolution: Battle of Saratoga October 13, 1777
A force of roughly 10,000 men were trapped, mostly British regulars under General "Gentleman Johnny" Burgoyne . Burgoyne had advanced from French Canada in the summer of 1777 with the intention of taking Albany, New York , and cutting New England off from the rest of the colonies by seizing control of the Hudson River Valley. In the spring, the British had seized colonial forts at Crown Point and Ticonderoga . The Americans retreated. However, a successful colonial delaying action comprising the systematic blocking of roads, destruction of bridges, and harassment of British troops with sniper fire slowed the British advance beyond the southern ends of Lakes Champlain and George to a few kilometers a day. Burgoyne's force was eventually blocked by colonial regular soldiers and militia under General Horatio Gates in the area north of the Hudson Valley town of Saratoga .
Surrender: Battle of Yorktown October 17-19, 1781
On August 14 , 1781, Washington received news that the French Ships stationed in the West Indies , were sailing with his fleet to the Chesapeake Bay . If they moved quickly, the Americans and French might be able to trap Cornwallis' army at Yorktown. Admiral de Grasse sailed his French battle fleet of twenty-eight ships north toward Virginia. Simultaneously, on August 21 , 1781, Washington began moving his army south. As they marched south, Admiral de Grasse's fleet arrived at the Chesapeake Bay. De Grasse defeated Admiral Thomas Graves ' fleet in the Battle of the Chesapeake and won control of the bay. Cornwallis was now stranded. On September 28 , Washington and Rochambeau, along with Lafayette's troops and 3,000 of de Grasse's men, arrived at Yorktown. In all, there were approximately 17,000 men converging on Cornwallis' camp. The city was soon surrounded and under heavy fire. On October 14 , the Franco-American forces captured two major British redoubts . After a useless counterattack, Cornwallis offered to surrender on October 17 . On October 19 , the papers were signed and he officially surrendered. About 7,000 British troops became prisoners to the American forces