One of the most important facets of any revolution is violence. This is often a response to the heightened repression or other intolerable demands from the government against its people. The American Revolution is no exception. Following the Seven Years War, England need to recover some of their finances which were lost due to the war. Parliament achieved this by the taxation of the American colonies; the Stamp Act of 1765 is an example of this. This act resulted in outrage from the Colonies and led to rioting, rhetoric, and the formation of the Stamp Act Congress. These actions quickly led to the repel of the Stamp Act; however, there were numerous new taxes levied to take their place. The Americans continued to object strongly to these new measures and formed organized political groups such as the Committee of Corresponding and the Sons of Liberty. These groups not only demanded less severe taxes, but Colonial representation in Parliament. When England denied them representation, the Colonists decided to fight their colonizer for political freedom. Making the American Revolution the first anti-colonial, democratic revolution in history. With the battle cry of “ No taxation without representation”, Americans went to war and it is from this violent uproar that the United States of America was born.
The “thirteen” colonies which would later become the Unites States of America were originally colonies of Great Britain. By the time that the American Revolution took place, the citizens of these colonies were beginning to grow weary with Britain’s rule. Rebellion and discontent were rampant.. The main reason for their revolt against England was the taxation issue. The reaction against taxation was often violent and the most powerful and articulate groups in population rose against the taxation. Then in October of 1765, colonial representatives met on their own for the first time and decided to mobilize forces against their Mother country. From this point on, events reached the point of no return for the colonies. In December of 1773, the Boston Tea Party occurred as a direct response to the much-hated Tea Act. In 1774, the First Continental Congress met and formed and began to raise issues which would later stimulant local organizations to end their fidelity for England.
However, not everyone favored the revolutionary movement; this was especially true in areas mixed in ethnic culture and in those that were untouched by war. Like Britain’s two loyal colonies; Florida and Quebec. At the time of the Revolutionary War, there were in actuality fifteen British colonies in America; Florida and Quebec being the two constantly left out. In 1774 England passed the Quebec Act. This Act made Quebec the fourteenth American colony. Quebec’s loyalty was put to the test within a year of the passing of the Act. The rebelling “original” thirteen colonies sent two armies north to capture and utilized the Quebecian territory. Quebec’s militia had just enough warning to organize its garrison against the forces of Benedict Arnold. In midwinter of 1775 Arnold’s attempt to take seige of the garrison was put asunder when he was wounded by Quebec’s militia. By the following Spring the attacking forces retreated—and the battles at Quebec’s garrison would be the first and last American Revolution battles fought on Canadian soil.
Unlike Canada, Britain gained control of Florida in 1763 in exchange for Cuba, which was captured from Spain during the Seven Years’ War. With British rule looming in the future, most of the Spanish residence which inhabited Florida left, leaving Florida virtually bare. The British did not take into account the large populations of Indians and blacks which shared the colony with them. The only two cities with more than a handful of white residence were Pensacola and St. Augustine. These two cities would become the heart of the new “Floridas”.
Parliament split, the then larger Florida, into two; East and West Florida. Britain attempted to attract white settlers with the Florida land grant. Large corporations which promised to bring in labors were allotted large tracts of land, up to tens of thousands of acres. Even immigrants with small families were given small tracts of land to settle. During the Britains rule, the Florida colonies remained loyal to England. British Florida would have flourished even farther if given more time, but England’s rule only lasted for twenty years. For Spain captured Pensacola, and subsequently West Florida from British rule in 1781. It would take until 1784 when the American Revolution peace treaty was signed for Spain to regain control of the rest of Florida.
The Revolutionary War erupted on April 19, 1775. The reason the British and the Americans resorted to using arms after a decade of fighting verbally, was because both sides finally became aware that force alone would decide on the issues which divided the empire. In April 1775, the battle of Leton occurred, closely followed by the battle of Concord. “These two very important bloodshed served to evoke the sprit of the American patriotism”.
The Second Continental Congress met on May 10, 1775 and George Washington was elected commander of the patriotic forces. He along with several other generals would led their men for the defense of America and the freedom she stood for. By early 1776, Americans were ready to denounce any allegiance to the British crown. By spring of the same year, all royal governors had been relieved of office and replaced by America’s makeshift government. The Congress itself expressed sovereign powers. In July 1776, Congress met and adopted the Articles of Confederation. Under the articles, the central government was very weak and the states held most of the power, but it was a solid beginning. After Shay’s Rebellion, the Articles were disowned and the Federal Constitution was written, 1787. It is still the basic law of t he United States of America.
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