American Revolution Project

For Social Studies 9 By Siera Zandvliet

Activity 1 - Important People/Events of the American Revoloution

George Washington

George Washington was a revolutionary hero, a respected commander and a influential political figure out of history. He contributed to many wins for the Americans during the revolutionary war including leading the continental army as commander-in-chief . He was also elected to represent the colony of Virginia in both the First and Second Continental Congress. After the revolution he became the newly united colonies first ever president. He was significant to the American Revolution for his willingness to stand up for what was best for others even when not many people believed in him.

Boston Tea Party

The Boston tea party was when the "Sons of Liberty" dressed as Indians and snuck onto a boat importing tea from England. They proceeded to dump the shipment over the edge of the boat and into the Atlantic ocean, ruining the entire shipment. This event was significant because it was one of the first major rebellions against the British, in this case, a rebellion on high taxation without representation.

"Sons of Liberty"

The "Son's of Liberty" were an organized group of dissidents that originated from the Northern American colonies. They were opposed to the British rule over the colonies and secretly protected the rights of the people. They were significant to the revolutionary war because they stood up for people's rights and fought the rule of the British to contribute to America's freedom.

Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin was a jack-of-all-trades political figure who served a a revered and respected diplomat throughout his life. During and after the revolution he signed all of the 4 major documents related to the war. He was chosen to represent the states as the first United States minister to France, helping to form allies with other countries as well. He also made several advances in electricity in his time. Benjamin Franklin was important to the revolution mainly because of his extensive political work to form allies and help the colonies win the revolution.

Thomas Jefferson

Thomas Jefferson is known as one of America's Founding Fathers. He contributed greatly to the revolution mainly as a political figure and writer of official documents. One of his works that he is greatly known for has influenced the way many countries fought for their own independence, known as the Declaration of Independence. This document stated why the colonies wanted their freedom and how they felt they were being mistreated. It also made declaring war against Britain legal for the colonies. Thomas Jefferson was hugely significant to the American Revolution for his hard work to prove that the 13 colonies deserved independence.

John Adams

John Adams was a well known political diplomat with a sense of justice. When the colonies began to be mistreated by the British, John made it his business to stop the mistreatment of his people. He was elected a delegate to the first continental congress. John Adams also helped to set a treaty of alliance with the French, eventually helping them win the revolution. He was significant to the revolution because he knew what needed to be done to free his people from oppression, and he did everything in his power to carry out the deed.

Boston Massacre

The Boston Massacre was known as one of the first physical battles between the British and the 13 colonies. The massacre of 5 Boston colonists was carried out by British regulars along with injuring many others. When the killers were found innocent of their blatant crimes colonists thought that the British had gone too far, and this event was one of the main triggers or breaking points for more people to demand independence. This event was important because it was almost like a wake up call for all the people who were on the ropes about the revolution, this massacre truly showed the colonists just how unfairly they were being treated.

Stamp Act

the stamp act was a law made by the british parliament calling for taxtation on the 13 colonies. this law was made mainly for the reason that england was in debt for the many expensive wars it was fighting. so they decided to abuse the 13 colonies by making them pay hefty taxes in british currency; which at the time was hard to come by being so that the americains were using their own currency. this act made the colonists very angry and so there were many devastating riots and protests. these events that were happening so frequently cause the british parliament to reapeal the act. the parliament came to the conclusion that they had the right to tax colonists and collect taxes in the future, which sent the colonies into an uproar. this series of events also anitciated the sons of liberty. this event was significant because it was the one of the first triggers for the revoloution to begin.

Intolerable Acts

The Intolerable Acts was the colonists name for a series of punitive laws that were passed by the British parliament. There were a total of 4 acts within it. These acts were introduced in a response to the Boston Tea Party, as a kind of punishment to the colonists for acting out. The acts took away self-governing and historic rights, which triggered outrage and much resistance in the 13 colonies. The colonists thought that these laws were violations of their age old rights; and the continental congresses were formed to protest. This event was significant because it triggered people to take matters into their own hands and come together to protest.

Quebec Act

The Quebec Act (formally known as the British North America Act) was an act created by the British parliament to essentially limit where the colonies could expand their land to. This act also removed references to Protestantism from the oath of faith, which was huge considering that almost everyone in the colonies practiced that religion. In addition, the act guaranteed the free practice of the catholic faith. The act made colonists upset because of the disrespect to their religion and because of the confiscating of their land. This event was important because it showed just how little the British cared about what the opinions of the 13 colonies were.

Image Depicting the Struggle for Independance

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Image of the Boston Tea Party

This image depicts the Boston tea party, in which the "sons of liberty" dressed as native americains and dumped a shipment of tea, from the British, off the side of the boat it was being transported in. This event was important because of it being one of the first major rebellions against the British, from the 13 colonies. The colonies were protesting taxation without representation. I think this image does a good job of showing how the americains struggled for their independence.

Activity 2 - 8 Major Battle Summaries

1775 Battle of Lexington and Concord

This battle took place on Wednesday, April 19, 1775. It was significant because it was one of the first military engagements between the British and the 13 colonies. It was fought in Middlesex country, in the province of Massachusetts Bay. About 1500 British army regulars that were commanded by Lieutenant Francis Smith, planned to apprehend military ammo and supplies. The colonist militia (3800) heard of their plans and outnumbered the British. Due to colonist inside intelligence the colonies prevailed. There was a total of 122 deaths.

1776 Battle of Long Island

Took place on Tuesday, August 27th, 1776. The British force of 20000, under the command of Lord Charles Cornwallis, Sir Henry Clinton and Sir William Howe, decided to attempt to claim Newyork because its focal location was a great communication point between the North and South colonies. When the colonies army of 10000, led by George Washington, Israel Putnam and William Alexander, realized what the British were planning to attack they moved from their post in Boston to Newyork. Eventually the colonies withdrew their troops to prevent deaths. The total deaths of the battle were 364. Due to the colonies withdraw the British claimed Newyork.

1776 Battle Trenton

This battle took place on Thursday, December 26th, 1776. After George Washington and his army withdrew their forces from Newyork, the Continental Army was beginning to lose hope. Many casualties were weighing on the soldiers minds. The 2400 colonist soilders marched to Trenton, New Jersey and fought to regain control of the city from the 1520 British soilders led by Johann Rall. Their commander successfully led them to victory and the win of the battle lifted solider's spirits. This battle was important to the revolution because it shows how sometimes losing is hard but that no one should ever lose hope. The total casualties of this battle were 24.

1777 Battle of Germantown

This battle took place on Saturday, October 4th, 1777. The colonist commanders, George Washington and Nathaniel Greene, and their 11000 troops were suffering from successive defeats. The 9000 British troops who were led by Lord Charles Cornwallis, Sir William Howe and Wilhelm van Knyphasen decided to take advantage of the colonist's low spirits and try to locate and and destroy their enemy forces; and so the British travelled to Germantown, Pennsylvania. During the battle the Continental Army was forced to withdraw their forces and run, but the British followed. Eventually the colonists army escaped and the British were declared the winner, yet they failed to completely eradicate the enemy forces. The total deaths of the battle were 223. This battle was important because it shows how the colonist army endured through tough times during the revolution.

1778 Battle of Monmouth

This battle took place on Sunday, June 28th, 1778. This battle was an inconclusive win. It was important to the revolution because it demonstrates how not all battles during the revolution had a clear winner. The battle took place at Monmouth Courthouse, New Jersey. The colonist force of 11000, led by George Washington, Charles Lee, Henry Knox and Nathaniel Greene, attacked the British force of 10000, led by Sir Henry Clinton, Charles Cornwallis and Alexander Leslie, from behind. Total casualties were 650.

1778 Capture of Savannah

The battle took place on Tuesday, December 29th, 1778, in Savannah, Georgia. The British force of 3100, led by Archibald Campbell, wanted to gain control of Georgia so they began attacking many towns throughout the colony. The British drove the 850 colonist troops, led by Robert Howe, out of town, taking many prisoners and sending the rest to South Carolina. The victory for the British was followed by the capture of many more towns in Georgia. There were a total of 90 people killed during the battle. This battle was important because it shows how even though the British won many battles the colonists eventually came out on top by never losing the will to fight.

1780 Siege of Charleston

On Wednesday, March 29th, 1780, in Charleston, South Carolina the battle of Charleston began. It ended on May 12th of the same year. The British began to shift focus to the Southern colonies. 13500 British troops, led by Sir Henry Clinton, Marriott Arbuthrot and Charles Cornwallis, surrounded the city of Charleston in siege formation and waited for the 5466 colonist troops, led by Benjamin Lincoln to run out of supplies. After six weeks of siege the colonists surrendered the city to the British, declaring the British the winner of the battle. The total deaths of the siege were 168. This battle was important because it was one of the first battles the colonists fought with one of their allies, the French. It was also one of the last battles fought during the revolution.

1781 Battle of Cowpens

This battle took place in Cowpens, South Carolina, on Wednesday, January 17th, 1781. The battle to control South Carolina up to this point had come to a stalemate. Neither side had enough offensive power to take on the other. Daniel Morgan and his 1912 colonist troops fought a decisive battle with their meagre troops against the 1150 British soilders led by Banastre Tarleton. In the end the colonists overcame the British due to their larger number of troops. The total death count was 135. This battle was important to the revolution because it shows how both sides had to persevere even when their numbers were so low, and that the struggle to win the independence that the 13 colonies strived for was not an easy one.

Major Battle Summary

1781 Battle of Yorktown

The battle or siege of Yorktown was one of the last battles fought during the americain revolution between the British and the combined force of the 13 colonies and their French allies. This battle took place between September 28th, 1781 and October 19th, 1781.

The battle began when lord Cornwallis, the British commander, began to lose control of the carolinas. Cornwallis decided to send his troops to Yorktown, Virginia and capture the city. After hearing the news of this, general Washington (the colonies commander) and General de Rochambeau (the French commander) marched their troops to Virginia. They immediately formed a circle around Yorktown in traditional siege formation; intending to starve the British inot surrender. On October 9th the americains began artillery bombardment on the town, causing the British to lose much of their own amo in retaliation.

On October 19th, 1781 lord Cornwallis finally called for surrender due to their lack of ammunition and quickly dwindling food supply. The battle ended with a total of 381 casualties in both sides. The surrender made the colonies and the French the obvious winners and this marked the end of battles for the americain revolutionary war.

In conclusion the americains strong strategies seemed to result in their overall success in the americain fight for their independance.

Activity 3 - Outcomes of the American Revoloutin

Declaration of Independance, Treaty of Paris and the Global Effect

The results of the American Revolution fall under 3 categories, Declaration of Independence, treaty of Paris and global effect.

The Declaration of Independence was an official document declaring that the colonists were to become their own nation and that they had the right to declare war against the British. It also included a detailed account of why they wanted to have their own independence. It was signed by all 13 governors of the 13 colonies of America. This document inspired other nations to rebel against their oppressors in the future and has led to making life better for a lot of people. This document was also one of the first documents to suggest that men and women are equal. In addition, this document was so influential that Americans today celebrate it every year on the anniversary of its signing, July 4th, also known as Independence Day!

The Treaty of Paris (signed by both the 13 colonies and British officials on September, 3rd, 1783) was the document that officially ended the American Revolutionary war. It was a document securing peace with Britain and other allied countries (France, Spain, etc.). The document said that the British were to recognize the independence of the new nation. It also set land boundaries, fishing rights and allowed for the exchange of money between citizens of different countries and opened up the Mississippi River for the use of both nations. The colonists agreed to pay all owed debts and allow any remaining British people to leave the country safely. This document was rather influential because of it being the document to end the war, other countries later used this document or their own renditions of it to make peace among themselves.

The global effect of the American Revolution is basically explaining how the revolution effected the world. The revolution had a major impact globally and there are 2 main reasons how. Firstly, since the American Revolution was fought between a magnificent world power and an untrained underdog group of colonies, the fact that the colonists won is pretty huge. This taught the world that even when the odds don't seem to be in your favour, having the courage to carry on and fight for what you believe in can have a positive outcome. The win for the colonists also brought them together under one nation after they realised how good they work together, this shows that working in teams can make a significant difference. Secondly, since the overall outcome of the revolution for the colonists was so great, it inspired other nations in the future to fight for fairness and equality in their own societies.

In conclusion the outcome of the American Revolution was imperative for us to live the way we do today.

Activity 4 - Central Question

"Was the American Revolution Justified?"

I think that overall the American Revolution was justified. And I think that the revolution was also beneficial to the way we Canadians live today.

After the colonies had settled they began to self-govern and exist peacefully, this was working just fine until the British decided to exploit them. The British transferred their own problems onto the 13 colonies, which was extremely unfair; they did this through over taxation without representation and by denying them the right that the average British man had, even though the colonists were British citizens. This was the reason (among some others) that the revolution began.

In the Declaration of Independence (drafted by Thomas Jefferson and signed by a governor representing each of the 13 colonies) the leaders of colonies called for war against the British and gave a long and detailed list of what they felt were mistreatments or injustices.

When the war finally ended and the colonists won their independence, their win against the British inspired other countries to fight for freedom. It also showed that even the strongest world powers could be defeated. The result of the Americans winning their independence has also benefited us Canadians in the sense that us sharing a continent with a mighty world power has protected us from invasions and other threats.

So, in my opinion the American Revolution was justified because it not only joined 13 independent states under one nation, but also inspired others to follow suit.

Image Depicting the American's New-Found Independance

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The First American Flag

I chose this image of the first American flag to represent the colonies' new-found independence because it symbolizes one of the main benefits of the revolution, The uniting of 13 different groups of people to form one united nation that would grow to become one of the world's greatest power countries and inspire others to fight for their own freedom.