Written November 16, 2016
The American Revolution was an extremely significant war in World history, and especially in American history. This war was what made America independent from Great Britain in the late 1700’s. The original thirteen colonies that had settled in North America due to tensions from Parliament. This revolution directly effects Georgia as well, as Georgia was one of the original colonies and formed a group called the Association to ban trade with Britain.
The main buildup to the American Revolution was Great Britain’s taxation of the colonies, such as the Stamp Act, Townshend Tariffs, and the Tea Act. The colonists’ resistance to these taxes resulted in the Boston Massacre. Tension was rising between the colonies and Great Britain from these events all the way from 1765, when the revolution hadn’t begun until 1775.
June seventeenth marked the day the first revolutionary battle took place with Washington being the commander in chief for the Continental Army against General William Howe’s British regiment in Boston. This battle is more commonly known as the Battle of Bunker Hill. It resulted in a defeat for the colonists, but that didn’t stop them from fighting for their independence. The main turning point for the colonies was during the first and second Battles of Saratoga, New York on September nineteenth and October seventh. The official victory during the second Battle of Saratoga resulted in the French to openly join the war to help the Americans. As a result, a civil war for independence became a world war.
Nathanael Green, who had become the American commander in the South, was able to make General Cornwallis and his army retreat to Virginia in Yorktown. Because he did this, Washington was able to move into Yorktown with his fourteen thousand soldiers and force Cornwallis to surrender which ended the revolution. The revolution lasted a long eight years, but resulted in America’s independence from Britain as we know it today. However, it deeply affected America and how we know it now.
Obviously, the American revolution directly affected America because it granted us independence from the British. As previously mentioned, it was the result of growing tensions from strict taxation laws. However, the American Revolution also resulted in other revolutions such as protesting slavery, women’s rights and the Abolitionist Movement. It also changed the government in America. It caused to colonists to form a democratic government that limited its size and power. It also allowed us to elect our leaders and to avoid the type of control Britain originally had on America.
Along with the goods that came of independence, there were also things that the revolution was able to avoid. For example, the French Revolution resulted in the Reign Of Terror that America was able to avoid. America was also able to do away with land inheritance laws and the Anglican Church. All of these changes were made before the nineteenth century even began. To get more specific, the American Revolution also affected and changed the state of Georgia specifically.
Colonists that were living in Georgia had been very hesitant to join the revolution against Britain because they had flourished under royal rule. During the time under this rule, the state was referred to as Royal Georgia. This was a period of time during the termination of Trustee Georgia, which was when Georgia was governed by a Board of Trustees. What had occurred during Royal Georgia was that royal governors from England established governments in Georgia before the colonists finally decided to join the revolution. Royal Georgia saw the Reynolds Administration, Ellis Administration, and Wright Administration all come and go.
Along with being under royal rule from England, the colonists in Georgia also felt that they needed the British to protect them. During the time of colonists, the Native American Indians were thought of as the enemy. Georgia feared a possible attack from the Native Indians, so they used British Troops as protection. This was an added hesitation for the Georgians. Georgia also didn’t send a representative to Pennsylvania for the First Continental Congress.
The First Continental Congress had met to form the Association, which I had mentioned previously, in order to stop trade with Britain. Since Georgia was so hesitant to join, they formed a provincial congress that met in Savannah. There, they discussed whether the Association was a good idea and if it was worth the risk to revolt. However, Georgia finally sent a representative to the Second Continental Congress, who was a man named Lyman Hall.
The thing that really made the colonists in Georgia to full heartedly join the revolution was hearing the news of the battles of Lexington and Concord. Hearing the news resulted in a group called the Sons of Liberty go to Savannah and share powder with the revolutionaries in South Carolina. In 1775, Georgia finally adopted the ban on trade with Britain at the second provisional congress in Savannah. During the same year, a local committee in Augusta confronted Thomas Brown, who was commander of a regiment of loyalists called the King’s Rangers. Because he had denounced the Association and refused to honor it, the committee proceeded to torture him by scalping, fracturing his skull, burning his feet, and hauling him through the streets.
In Georgia, there was an event called the Battle of the Rice Boats. This battle was a two day battle in 1776. It consisted of the British warships taking rice filled merchant ships that were docked in the harbor of Savannah. The British only came to take the crops rather than take Savannah, as Georgians had feared. Later on in the revolution during the year 1779, Georgia was actually the one and only of the thirteen colonies to actually be restored to royal allegiance. However, it didn’t last long because a few months later, a soldier from France helped Washington to take Savannah back. Along with that, there were two Battles of Augusta.
In conclusion, the American Revolution was extremely impacting for the world, the United States, and Georgia. The American Revolution actually started a world war accidentally due to France electing to help the colonists. It ended the British rule over America and ended the monarchy in America. America was free to form a democratic, independent government that didn’t have such strict taxation laws like the British were trying to force on the colonists. It also directly affected the state of Georgia. Britain tried to capture Savannah, but was taken back by the “whigs.” It had overthrown royal rule and even confronted it’s royal governor. Georgia was also able to put their governor from England under house arrest in order to fight for their independence. The American Revolution was a very significant even in our history and it one that still effects the United States of America to this day.