American Revolution

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American Revolution

  1. 1.  The crisis over the stamp act aroused and unified American as no previous political event ever had.
  2. 2.  In 1776-68 the government created the American Board of customs, located in Boston and reporting all directly to treasury.
  3. 3.  The colonial governors were instructed to maintain tight control of the assemblies and not to agree to acts that would increase popular representation in the assemblies or the length of time the legislatures sat.
  4. 4.  Early November 1774 George III had told North that “blows must decide whether they are subject to the country or independent”. British Government thus built up it’s army and navy and began to restraining the commerce first of New England and then of there colonies.
  5. 5.  In April of 1775 fight had broke out in Massachusetts. During the long march back to Boston, the strung out British columns were repeatedly harassed by patriot militia. By the end of the day 273 redcoats and 95 patriot had been killed or wounded.
  6. 6.  On July 4, 1776 the delegates formally approved the declaration of Independence.
  7. 7.  For over a year before the declaration of independence, American and British forces had been at war. It was a war that would go on for nearly eight years-the longest conflict in American history until the Vietnam war two centuries later.
  8. 8.  British troops had suffer heavy losses in their first clashes with American militia in Massachusetts in the spring of 1775.
  9. 9.  The prospect of American peace with Britain now compelled Spain to abandon it’s demands for Gibraltar and to settle for the return of East and West Florida. In the final treaty signed on September 3,1783 the united states, by shrewdly playing of the mutual fears of the European power, gained both independence and concession s that stunned the French and indeed all of Europe. It was the greatest achievement in the history of America.
  10. 10.  Equality –the most powerful idea in all of American history- predicted an end to the incessant squabbling over position and rank and the bitter contentions of factional politics that had afflicted the colonial past.
  11. 11.  Yet in the end equality meant more than careers open to talented few. Ordinary people may not have been as educated or wise as gentleman who had college degrees, but they weren’t trustworthy.
  12. 12.  Jefferson’s affirmation in the Declaration of Independence that all men are created equal was, as he recalled , simply “the common sense” of age.
  13. 13. Indeed, far more black lived in slavery at the end of the revolutionary era than at the beginning, and slavery in part of America, far from declining, was on the verge of it’s greatest expansion.
  14. 14.  The colonist had generally taken slavery for granted as part of the natural order of a monarchical society and as one aspect of the general brutality and cheapness of life in those pre modern and pre humanitarian times. Pre Revolutionary America, and the colonist had felt little need to defend slavery any more than forms of debasement.
  15. 15.  By 1810 the number of free blacks in the northern states had grown from several hundred in 1770 to nearly 50,000. the Revolutionary vision of a society of independent freeholders led congress in the 1780s especially to forbid slavery in the newly organized northwest territory between the Appalachians and the Mississippi.

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