Essay on American Revolutionary War and Continental Congress

Submitted By jfsmith161
Words: 910
Pages: 4

American Revolutionary War
The American Revolution started the way that so many wars do, people were being treated unequally and wanted to gain their freedom from such biased and unequal treatment. The colonist of America were quite outraged at the taxes they were being forced to pay such as the Stamp Act of 1765, the Townshend Tariff of 1767, and the Tea Act of 1773. “A continual source of tension was the taxes levied by the British government on the colonists”1 They were fine with paying the taxes they were upset that they paid the taxes just like every other British subject, but yet they were treated differently than other British people. This in turn sparked the beginning of the American Revolutionary War. “The first bloodshed of the Revolution occurred on March 5, 1770.”2 This was known as the Boston Massacre. Five civilians died as a result of the incident. The three years that followed the Boston Massacre, from 1770 to 1772 went by quietly without any major confrontation between the British soldiers and the colonists.
“On September 5, 1774 representatives from every colony except Georgia met in Philadelphia at what came to be known as the first Continental Congress.”3 This group of men consisted of George Washington, John Adams, Samuel Adams, Patrick Henry, and John Jay. The Constitutional Congress did not discuss freedom from Britain in this first meeting. They discussed such things as taxation without representation, a declaration of rights due to every citizen, and trial by jury. The Constitutional Congress agreed to meet again to continue what they had begun in this meeting in May of 1775. But by this time Violence had broken out and the first shots of the American Revolutionary War had been fired on April 19, 1775 in Lexington and Concord, Massachusetts.
The second Constitutional Congress meeting was held on May 5, 1775 as promised in Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson joined the Congress. The men did not all have the same views during this meeting. Some wanted to have immediate independence and others were still loyal to King George III. They finally decided to form an army to protect themselves from the continued attacks from the British army. This was the beginning of the Continental Army, and they named George Washington to be the commander in chief of the Continental Army.
On June 17, 1775 the Continental Army was involved in its first battle. This battle is known as the Battle of Bunker Hill. Although this battle was counted as a victory for the British they suffered many casualties, 226 were killed and another 928 were wounded. The Continental Army also lost quite a few men, with 139 killed and 278 wounded. The Battle of Bunker Hill only lasted around three hours, but was one of the bloodiest battles in the American Revolution. The Continental Army continued on fighting during the fall and winter months to keep the British at bay in Boston. The capture of Fort Ticonderoga in New York help to shift the tables of the war late in the winter. The British left the city in March 1776 and fled to Canada. “In June 1776, Britain dispatched the largest invading force since the Spanish Armada to New York in an attempt--ultimately unsuccessful--to crush the rebellion later known as the American Revolution.”4
While the Revolutionary War was going on, the movement for independence from Britain began to grow stronger and become more and more popular with the colonists. On July 4, 1776 the Continental Congress introduced the Declaration of Independence. Fifty six men signed the Declaration of Independence. “Anything but celebratory. That's how Benjamin Rush of Pennsylvania remembered the atmosphere in the Continental Congress in Philadelphia when delegates affixed their signatures to the Declaration of