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The War for American Independence


The War for American Independence Chapter 7 You Say You Want a Revolution? The newly formed United States of America declares independence July 4th, 1776 Just One ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The War for American Independence

The War for American Independence
  • Chapter 7

You Say You Want a Revolution?
  • The newly formed United States of America
    declares independence July 4th, 1776
  • Just One SLIGHT Problem
  • No other country recognizes us as being
    independent ?

Divisions in Colonial America
  • Not all colonists were supportive of the war
  • Loyalists made up 20-30 of the population
  • 40-45 were Patriots
  • 25-40 were Pacifists and/or Neutral
  • Northern colonies were mostly Patriots
  • Southern states were Loyalist

Reasons for Remaining Loyal
  • AKA Tories
  • Some held jobs by the crown or parliament
  • Some feared disorder without a king
  • Some were members of the Anglican Church, headed
    by the king
  • Some slaves were promised their freedom if they
    fought for the British

Reasons for Wanting American Independence
  • AKA Patriots
  • No taxation without representation
  • Colonies were self-sustaining
  • Wanted religious freedom
  • Some just wanted more land out west

Reasons for Being a Pacifist or Neutral Party
  • Many such as the Quakers did not approve of war
    for religious reasons
  • Remaining neutral allowed for partnerships with
    both sides, and later with the victor (just like
    Switzerland has done many times!)

What About the Native Americans?
  • Native American populations were severely divided
  • Some tribes joined the British (fears of
    Americans taking more of their land)
  • Others joined the Americans (had previous
    positive partnerships)
  • Splits caused the largest war in Native American

  • Complied from state militias
  • Men were untrained, unskilled, and unprepared
  • Soldiers enlisted for only one year
  • Numbers never reached over 17,000 men

Off to a Lousy Start
  • American armies lost almost all early battles
    they fought
  • British were far better organized
  • Congress did not fund armies well enough for
    quality equipment, supplies, food or medical

  • Many officers refused to fight against Americans
  • Soldiers enlisted for life
  • The war was expensive and unpopular in England
  • The British had to hire many mercenary soldiers
    from Germany called Hessians

George Washingtons Leadership
  • George Washington had fought in the French and
    Indian War and was a great military strategist
  • However, Americans lost almost every early battle
    in the war
  • Moral was very low in the fall/winter of 1776
  • Washington knew he needed a victory before the
    end of the year

Surprising Them in their Undies!
  • Battle of Trenton

Battle of TrentonDecember 1776
  • On the night of December 25, 1776, George
    Washington crossed the freezing Delaware River to
    attack Hessians.
  • The American troops surprised Hessian mercenary
    soldiers in an early morning raid and captured
    nearly 1,000 men. There were no American
  • The battle was a major victory for the Americans,
    as morale was boosted and soon the army began to
    attract recruits as a result

Battle of SaratogaHope for the Colonies!
Battle of SaratogaOctober 1777
  • October 7, 1777 Saratoga, New York
  • Turning point in the war Victory at Saratoga
  • American General Horatio Gates faced off against
    British General John Burgoyne
  • (Benedict Arnold was the hero, but General Gates
    gets all the credit remember this later on)
  • Ended a major British threat in the northern

Why did the Battle of Saratoga take place?
  • The British plan was to cut the colonies in two
    along the New York state line like a snake
    because when you cut off a snakes head it dies!
  • This plan did not work because the colonists
    killed British generals and Native American
    guides, and by doing so did not follow
    eighteenth-century laws of war.

First American Victories!
  • The first two major battles that the colonists
    won occurred at Trenton and Saratoga.

Gaining New Allies!
  • Upon hearing of the American victory at Saratoga,
    European countries like France and Spain declared
    their recognition of the United States of America
    and fully supported their war for independence.
  • Help from France in particular was necessary in
    winning the war!
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