I. Toward Independence 1775-1776
A. Congress vs. the King
1. Despite all the blood being lost, a large part of Congress wanted reconciliation with Britain.
2. John Dickinson led these moderates. They passed the Olive Branch petition. It expressed loyalty to the king.
3. Patriots like Samuel Adams and Patrick Henry from Virginia mobilized anti imperial sentiment.
B. Rebellion in the South
1. Fights between Patriots and loyalists broke out in many colonies
2. Patriot militia used force to disarm hundreds of Loyalists in Delaware, NJ, and NY.
3. The loyalists considered the patriots traitors.
4. The governor made 2 armies, one white and one black. The black army was known as the Ethiopian Regiment. It enlisted about 1,000 slaves who fled their Patriot owners.
C. Common Sense
1. Americans gradually turned towards independence because a lot of colonists still had a loyalty to the crown.
2. By 1775, Americans turned against the monarch.
3. Some Scots Irish artisans and laborers in Philadelphia became Patriots for religious and cultural reasons.
4. In 1776 Thomas Paine published Common Sense. It was a pamphlet calling for independence and republicanism spoke in a way that stimulated the public.
5. In Common Sense, Paine undermined traditional political order in language that public could respond to.
D. Independence Declared
1. People were inspired by Paine’s arguments and wanted a break from Britain.
2. On July 4, 1776 Congress approved the Declaration of Independence. The main author was Thomas Jefferson.
3. Jefferson justified the revolt by putting the blame on George III for destroying Americans’ lives.
II. The Trials of War, 1776 – 1778
A. War in North
1. When the British used military force to finish the American revolt, very few observers gave the rebels a chance. The British outnumbered the rebels.
2. The Americans were militarily weak. They didn’t have a navy and the army was poorly trained. The army only consisted of 18,000 people.
3. British control was obvious.
4. Because of the winter in America, the British army stopped their campaign. This was and advantage for the Americans and allowed them to get a couple of victories.
B. Armies and Strategies
1. British superiority didn’t discourage Continental armies. Howe’s tactical mistakes made it easier for the rebellion.
2. Congress promised Washington 75,000 men but the number never came to close of that.
3. Washington was lucky to have dodged an overwhelming defeat in the first year of the war.
C. Victory at Saratoga
1. To accommodate the long term war the British increased land tax to finance the war and prepared for a large campaign in 1777.
2. The battle at Saratoga was a major turning point in the war.
3. The Americans captured 5,000 troops and their equipment. The victory ensured the success of American diplomats in Paris, who was seeking an alliance with France.
4. Patriots on the home front were ecstatic.
D. Financial Crisis
1. When funds ran out, Patriot officials were frightened to raise taxes, knowing that would be extremely unpopular.
2. Instead of raising taxes individual states printed money. They issued $260 million in currency and bonds.
3. The notes couldn’t be backed by gold or silver, so Americans refused to accept them.
E. Valley Forge
1. During the winter of 1777-1778, is when British armies’ fears reached their peak.
2. The camps had terrible living conditions. Poor food, hard lodging, cold weather, fatigue, nasty clothes, and nasty cookery.
3. Nearby farmers refused to accommodate the soldiers because they were pacifists and/or pursued the self-interest of their families.
III. The Path to Victory 1778-1783
A. Negotiating the Treaty
1. Franklin and his associates exploited the rivalry between France and Britain.
2. The alliance with France gave the Patriots new life in the war and gave them a better chance for independence.
3. The alliance got the Americans new resources such as military supplies and…