Imperial Control The French Indian War left the British Gov. in debt. –The British expected the colonist to help pay for the cost of the war. –Many of the policies that the British enforced were a threat to the colonist. Did not allow the colonist to settle in the Appalachians. Imposed a Sugar Act -- taxed all sugar and other imports from non-Brtish colonies. 1765 the Stamp Act. Taxed special documents, mainly paper. –Colonist opposed the tax and the British repealed it »Colonist started to argue with parliament “No taxation without represention”.
Intensified Conflict King George III was determined to force the obedience of the colony. Many colonist were coming to believe independence was necessary. –About 1/3 of the colonies wanted freedom (Patriots). –Another 1/3 were supportive of King (Loyalist).
Declaration of Independence Delegates met from 12 of the 13 colonies. –Thomas Jefferson was the main author of the document. It declared that all men were created equal and have the right to Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Happiness. All power of government should come from the people. Summary of many of the ideals of the Enlightenment in Europe. http://www.ushistory.org/declaration/document/index.htm
War for Independence American forces were poorly trained and did not do well in battle. The British were the most powerful nation in the world at the time. –Turning point in the war was the American victory at Saratoga,NY. –War ended with Cornwallis surrender at Yorktown.
Articles of Confederation Articles of Confederation was adopted in 1777. –It set up a central governement and one- house in Congress. It was a weak governement. –Government could not levy taxes or coin money. –Gov. could not regulate trade with other countries. –No Chief Executive Officer. –Power was in the hands of individual states.
Constitution By 1787 many were unhappy with the Articles of Confederation. –Delegates met to create a new governement. –Created a Federal System of Government. Gov. was given important powers. –Declare war, raise army, regular trade and make treaties. Three branches of Gov. were created. –Executive, Legislative and Judicial. Not all liked the new government. –Idividual rights were not protected. »A Bill of Rights was added to guarentee these freedoms.