Portal:American Revolutionary War

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The American Revolutionary War Portal

Clockwise from top left: Battle of Bunker Hill, Death of Montgomery at Quebec, Battle of Cowpens, "Moonlight Battle"
The American Revolutionary War began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen united former British colonies on the North American continent, and ended in a global war between several European great powers. The war was the culmination of the political American Revolution and intellectual American Enlightenment, whereby the colonists rejected the right of the Parliament of Great Britain to govern them without representation. In 1775, revolutionaries gained control of each of the thirteen colonial governments, set up an alliance called the Second Continental Congress, and formed a Continental Army. Petitions to the king to intervene with the parliament on their behalf resulted in Congress being declared traitors and the states in rebellion the following year. The Americans responded by formally declaring their independence as a new nation, the United States of America, claiming sovereignty and rejecting any allegiance to the British monarchy. In 1777 the Continentals captured a British army, leading to France entering the war on the side of the Americans in early 1778, and evening the military strength with Britain. Spain and the Dutch Republic – French allies – also went to war with Britain over the next two years.

Throughout the war, the British were able to use their naval superiority to capture and occupy coastal cities, but control of the countryside (where 90% of the population lived) largely eluded them due to their relatively small land army. French involvement proved decisive, with a French naval victory in the Chesapeake leading to the surrender of a second British army at Yorktown in 1781. In 1783, the Treaty of Paris ended the war and recognized the sovereignty of the United States over the territory bounded by what is now Canada to the north, Florida to the south, and the Mississippi River to the west.

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Lochry's Defeat
Lochry's Defeat, also known as the Lochry massacre, was a battle fought on August 24, 1781, near present-day Aurora, Indiana, in the United States. The battle was part of the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), which began as a conflict between Great Britain and the Thirteen Colonies before spreading to the western frontier and bringing American Indians into the war as British allies. The battle was short and decisive: about one hundred Indians under Joseph Brant, a Mohawk war leader who was temporarily in the west, ambushed about an equal number of Pennsylvania militiamen led by Archibald Lochry. Brant and his men killed or captured all of the Pennsylvanians without suffering any casualties.


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Surrender of General Burgoyne.jpg
The Surrender of General Burgoyne at Saratoga by John Trumbull
Credit: Davepape
After the Battles of Saratoga, John Burgoyne surrendered to Horatio Gates on October 17, 1777

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Portrait attributed to Andrea Soldi, painted circa 1762–1765
General Sir Henry Clinton KB (16 April 1730 – 23 December 1795) was a British army officer and politician, best known for his service as a general during the American War of Independence, during most of which he was the British Commander-in-Chief in North America. In addition to his military service, due to the influence of the 2nd Duke of Newcastle, he was a Member of Parliament and the Governor of Gibraltar.

He came from a noble family that could trace its lineage to 1066 and had a long history of service to the Crown. The son of George Clinton, an admiral of the fleet, Sir Henry Clinton had two sons who continued the family tradition of high command: General Sir William Henry Clinton (1769–1846), and Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Clinton (1771–1829).


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The Romney breaking up in 1804
HMS Romney was a 50-gun fourth rate of the Royal Navy. Launched in 1762, the Romney spent most of her early career in North American waters, serving on the Newfoundland station, often as the flagship of the commander-in-chief. The ship was involved in the tensions of the American Revolution when she was sent to support the Boston commissioners enforcing the Townshend Acts in 1768. Her actions involved impressing local sailors, confiscating the merchant ship Liberty (a vessel belonging to John Hancock), and providing a refuge for the unpopular commissioners when rioting broke out after the seizure. She was active in the American War of Independence, serving in European waters from 1779. She assisted in the defense of the British Isles against a planned Franco-Spanish invasion, assisted in the capture of a Spanish frigate, and participated in the inconclusive 1781 Battle of Porto Praya. She later served in the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars in a career that spanned forty years, finally breaking up after running aground off the Dutch coast in 1804.


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From the American Revolutionary War task force of the Military history WikiProject:

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