Three Major Wars: An Essential Contribution to America Essay

Submitted By s_mcallister90
Words: 1235
Pages: 5

History 2010
31 MAR 2014

Three Major Wars: An Essential Contribution to America

Throughout history there have been many wars. While to some people wars are considered evil and are questionable, others would argue they are a necessity to the success of a country and the people. Between 1754 and 1815, America was involved in three major wars – the French and Indian War (1754-63), the Revolutionary War (1775-83), and the War of 1812. The French and Indian War, a colonial extension of the Seven Years War that ravaged Europe was the bloodiest American war in the 18th century - it took more lives than the American Revolution. Many events occurred in which lead to the Revolutionary War. The War of 1812, which many people of the time considered a "Second War for American Independence," began with an attack on Canada. I will discuss the major factors leading to each conflict, the grand strategy for both sides of the wars, the major battles of the conflicts and the results, why one side was ultimately victorious, and what the victors won. The French and Indian War was, quite simply, a war about imperialism. The French and the English were competing for land and trading rights in North America; these strivings resulted in a great deal of disputed land, particularly that of the rich Ohio River Valley. Within the global forces of clashing over colonial territory and wealth, the war can also be seen as a product of the localized rivalry between British and French colonists. The Revolutionary War began as an open conflict between the united thirteen colonies and Great Britain; a disagreement over the way in which Great Britain treated the colonies versus the way the colonies felt they should be treated. Americans felt they deserved all the rights of Englishmen. The British, on the other hand, felt that the colonies were created to be used in the way that best suited the crown and parliament. This conflict is embodied in one of the rallying cries of the American Revolution: No Taxation Without Representation. The War of 1812 was an outgrowth of the Napoleonic Wars, a series of conflicts in Europe from around 1800 to 1815. Napoleon was trying to hurt Britain's economy with his Continental System; Britain retaliated with economic sanctions of its own, preventing imports from the rest of the world into European ports. The immediate causes of the War of 1812 were a series of economic sanctions taken by the British and French against the US as part of the Napoleonic Wars and American outrage at the British practice of impressment, especially after the Chesapeake incident of 1807. Each side of the French and Indian war wanted to increase its land holdings. The British took retribution against Native American nations that fought on the side of the French by cutting off their supplies and then forcibly compelling the tribes to obey the rules of the new mother country. Native Americans that had fought on the side of the British with the understanding that their cooperation would lead to an end to European encroachment on their land were unpleasantly surprised when many new settlers began to move in. Both the French and the British made allies with the Indians because they were unfamiliar with the land and hoped that fighting with the Indians would give them the advantage. For the Revolutionary War, Washington quickly laid out a careful strategy for retaking New York City that he previously lost to the British. First, the French fleet would defeat the British navy and secure New York Harbor and the Hudson River. Next, American and French soldiers would take all the British garrisons around New York City, both on Long Island and in Rhode Island. Howe’s plan was to approach Philadelphia from the sea. He also proposed to leave weaker forces in New York City, curtailing their ability to attack up the Hudson in support of Burgoyne's army. Burgoyne proposed to lead an army down Lake Champlain, and then on to the Hudson River and Albany. For the