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 Americans were fighting on their own territory and knew the land well.  Americans did not always follow the European rules of warfare and used guerrilla.

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Presentation on theme: " Americans were fighting on their own territory and knew the land well.  Americans did not always follow the European rules of warfare and used guerrilla."— Presentation transcript:

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2  Americans were fighting on their own territory and knew the land well.  Americans did not always follow the European rules of warfare and used guerrilla tactics.  The French and Spanish aided America in its fight for independence.  The Americans were fighting for their freedom.  Britain had the most powerful military in the world.  The British were much more experienced in warfare.  Britain was economically weakened by a series of wars.  British officers were overconfident.

3 The European style of fighting in lines was used because the guns were so inaccurate. In order to inflict casualties, soldiers had to fire at the same time. The bayonet played an important role in linear warfare. After the soldier fired 4 or 5 shots, he was expected to fix his bayonet and fight hand to hand. By this time his barrel was so hot that it was almost impossible to reload his weapon anyway.bayonet While the Americans did, for the most part, fight a European style war, they had learned the skulking way of war, or guerrilla warfare. They employed ambushes and sneak attacks to inflict damage on the British.skulking These tactics were seen by the British as dishonorable. One of the most famous Americans to employ these tactics was Francis Marion, the “Swamp Fox”, who got his nickname because he led hit and run raids against the British and retreated to the swamps of South Carolina where his base was located.

4  April 19, 1775  7000 British troops from Boston were sent to arrest Sam Adams and John Hancock in Lexington and to destroy munitions in Concord  Local militia met the soldiers and started fighting  1 st Battles of the War  Referred to as “the shot heard round the world”

5 “We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately” - Franklin  2 nd Continental Congress in Philadelphia  Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration  We officially declare independence from Great Britain on July 4, 1776

6 Washington Crossing the Delaware (Emmanuel Leutze, 1851)

7  On the night of December 25, 1776, George Washington crossed the freezing Delaware River to attack Hessians.  The American troops surprised the Hessian mercenary soldiers in an early morning raid and the Americans captured nearly 1000 men. There were no American casualties.

8  Sept. – Oct  Turning point of the American Revolution for the U.S.  Benedict Arnold, who later betrays the U.S., defeats 8000 British troops at Saratoga, NY  France signs two treaties to ally with the U.S. in fighting the British  Spain supports the Americans too! Why was the help of France so important?

9  Washington was forced to retreat from Philadelphia  The army found themselves very short on supplies  Some lacked shoes and left bloody footprints in the snow  They endured the harsh winter and most did not desert (leave military duty) out of love for their country and Washington  Marquis de Lafayette (French) joined the Continental Army without pay and lived under the same conditions  Baron von Steuben (German) trained the army starting with a 100 man model company

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11  August – October 19, 1781  Last major battle of the American Revolution  English General Cornwallis was surrounded by both American and French forces and was forced to surrender.  The British lose all hope after the loss of this battle. How do you think Cornwallis felt about surrendering to the Americans? (Think about the beginning of the War.)

12  Britain officially recognized the United States as an independent nation!!  The U.S. boundaries would stretch west to the Mississippi River, north to Canada, and south to Spanish Florida  Each side would repay debts it owed the other

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