How revolutionary was the American war
How revolutionary was the American war
The American war of independence was also known as the American revolutionary war. This war was fought between the American colonies and England. The war itself started with the battle of Lexington and concord. It started when some soldiers of the British army arrived in Lexington, Massachusetts. Over there, they fired at the colonial militia which it was a group of farmers, boys as well as old men. Then on the following day they headed to Concord and over there they killed some Americans. Thus, this was the first engagement of battle of the revolutionary war. The broader sense of the revolution began when parliament started to impose laws and regulations to the colonies.
For instance, After the French and Indian war was over, Britain turned its attention to the colonies. They restricted the colonies to trade with other nations. Thus trough the navigation act the colonies were allowed to trade only with England. So goods such as sugar, tobacco, and cotton that were produced in the colonies could only be exported to British ports. Indeed, these rules and regulations ended up restricting the colonist’s life and freedom
Other laws that they impose on the colonies included taxes. Since the French and Indian war had put England in a lot of debt, they decided to raise the taxes. Then In 1764, England passed the Sugar Act, which was used to raise money from the colonies. Moreover, “The Stamp Act passed by England in 1765, placed taxes on everyday items such as newspapers, legal documents, and even playing cards” (Divine 135). Furthermore, England did not even consider the thoughts of the Americans when they tried to have soldiers enforce British taxes and acts. The colonists felt that they were treated unfairly so they called for a meeting to protest the tax. So, representatives from nine out of the thirteen colonies came to this meeting. “The colonists drafted petitions to parliament that stated no taxes should be imposed on them, but with their own consent, given personally, or by their representatives” (Divine 136). Besides, they felt that the stamp act was improper because Americans were not represented in parliament. But still, the British went behind their own law which is “no taxation without representation” (Divine 132) and still taxed the colonies anyway.
In return, the colonists imposed a voluntary boycott of British goods until parliament repealed the stamp act. So, it was obvious then, that the British were not treating the Americans equally like their own citizens in England. So I think that it was these inequalities that also lead to the decision to declare independence from the British rule. In addition, the “Townshend Acts came and it also taxed glass, paper, tea and lead.”(Divine 140) Therefore, the colonies refused to pay. In fact, it didn’t seem logical then that the colonies were regulated and tax by a government from so far away. Eventually, the Americans realized that the only way for them to retain their rights was to have political freedom from England. So they wanted independence from England. But unfortunately, the British strongly opposed letting the Americans be free. Therefore, it created many conflicts between the Americans and the British especially the soldiers. Indeed, all of these conflicts led to the revolutionary war.
Finally, when America decided to declare its independence and go to war, it was a sign of radical action. Britain’s army was bigger and consisted of well trained and experienced soldiers. Americans, on the other hand, had soldiers who were poorly trained and equipped. But that didn’t stop them. They were determined to go to war anyway in order to change the rule of the nation. As a result they were able to break away from British rule.
Thus the revolutionary war had a greater impact on the colonies and involved more than their independence. A new view of government was created that the world had not seen before. Democracy for the first time was implemented in a government and its authority was based on individual rights rather than from a king or church. Furthermore, the revolution changed the American society in some ways. For instance, after the war the American people denounced such English titles like esquire from the names of wealthy people. They also lower the amount of land that they needed in order to vote. Even though the American Revolution brought some change, other things were still the same.
For instance, the distribution of wealth in America was still uneven Thus, “the sudden accumulation of large fortunes by new families made other Americans sensitive to aristocratic display”(Divine 163) Moreover, women were not allow to vote and it took a long time for some slaves to be free or to be treated as equals. Thus the revolution did not bring about a big change of American society, at least not in the short term. But, “republicans such as Samuel Adams and Thomas Jefferson raised issues of immense significance for the later history of the United States. They felt that equality was essential. “Even though they failed to abolish slavery, institute universal manhood suffrage, or apply equality to women, they articulated a set of assumptions about people’s rights and liberties that challenge future generations of Americans.”(Divine 168)
America past and present, volume I, Divine Breen and Fredrickson Williams, copyright 2002