The Triumphant Side of the American Revolution
The American Revolution was a war between the thirteen colonies of America and the British that took place from 1775 to 1783. The colonies, which had not yet been unified, wanted freedom from the domineering British and their "taxation without representation". This saying, coined up twenty years prior to the beginning of the war, was a major slogan for the revolutionaries. The quote means, "If citizens are not represented in the government, then the government should not have the authority to tax them" . In the French and Indian War that lasted from 1754 to 1763, the British, ultimately victorious, fought the French over the control of territories in America that both sides claimed they owned. The war was very expensive for both sides, and the British decided to make up the money by taxing their colonies in America. Debating the validity of England's legal power to tax them like this, the colonies grew resentful of their mother country. Multiple taxes came about, and the most crippling one to the colonists was the tax on tea, which was "an entering wedge in the great dispute that was finally to wrest the American colonies from England" . The infamous Boston Tea Party in 1773 would result from the tax on tea, and the continuous conflicts escalated to a war about a year and a half later. Saving the contents of the war for the rest of the paper, the colonists, against all odds, managed to defeat the British and maintain their independence they established during the war. The answer to "How were the Americans able to fight their way to victory?" is still debated over today. Many historians claim that the group of colonists was just the mouse in between the two elephants, the French and the British, fighting and that the elephant on the mouse's side, the French, was victorious. However, this is untrue because the Americans did in fact play a major role in the gaining of American independence in the mid eighteenth century. Since the beginning and even before the war, the British greatly outnumbered the Americans in terms of military units. This British advantage is probably why the colonists didn't revolt sooner. As many as 200,000 people, including soldiers, militia fighters, sailors, etc., fought at some point for the revolutionaries, while somewhere between 350,000 and 450,000 people, including British soldiers, loyalists, natives, and Germans fought for the British side at one point or another. Regardless of the primary disadvantages, the Americans were able to hold out because of their motivation to protect their homeland, they knew the area they were defending, but most importantly because of the warfare tactics they used and the leaders they had. After the Battle of Saratoga, the dreadful turning point for the British, the French stepped in practically out of their hatred for the British to fight with the Americans. The French, who were much more militarily capable than the Americans at the time, transferred the possession of the upper hand in the war to the revolutionaries, who ultimately won.
By looking at the facts, one can see the obvious primary advantages the English had in the Revolutionary War. For almost 100 years before the revolution, the British had triumphed over nations as powerful as France and Spain. Britain's military was the best in the world. Their soldiers were well equipped, well paid, well disciplined, and well fed. The British navy dominated the seas. The British Empire could raise funds much more easily than the Continental Congress could, who had difficulty raising funds for even the most basic supplies for troops, including shoes and blankets. Some of the British funds were even used to hire German mercenaries to fight the Americans. These soldiers were known as Hessians. By mid- April of 1776, Washington had mustered all the troops he could, which resulted in about 19,000 fighters. The British, who put much less time in...
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