Chapter 5 - 2750-1776: Declaring Independence Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Chapter 5 - 2750-1776: Declaring Independence Deck (16)
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What were the social factors that contributed to the revolution?

A. Demographic Forces
B. Economic Prosperity
C. Religious Thinking


Describe the population and demographic factors that contributed to the revolution.

In the mid-1700s, colonial population exploded. Between 1750 and 1770 the population of the colonies doubled from 1 million to 2 million. From 1607 until 1740, colonists were confined to a several-hundred-mile-wide strip of territory along the Atlantic coast. Crowded towns and shortage of farmland forced inland migration. In Pennsylvania, 29 new towns were started between 1756 and 1765. In northern New England, 264 new towns were born between 1760 and 1776. More people also meant that more people drifted into the established colonial cities, which were ill-equipped to handle the flow of new citizens.


Describe the economic factors that contributed to the revolution.

By 1760, the Americans were prosperous people. Egalitarian participation in commerce meant that most colonists did well. Commerce between Britain and the colonies thrived. Between 1747 and 1765, both colonial exports to Britain and colonial imports from Britain more than doubled. High prices for farm exports resulted in rising standards of living for most Americans.


Describe the religious factors that contributed to the revolution.

The Great Awakening encouraged individualism and lessened dependence on traditional authority structures.


What were the MAJOR factors that contributed to revolution?

1. Social Factors Created an Environment Where Revolution Could Flourish
2. Britain’s Failed Attempt to Reorganize Its Empire


Describe Britain's failed attempt to reorganize its failed empire.

A. Abandonment of salutary neglect
B. Townshend Acts
C. Lull in events from 1771-1773 masked the lack of control
D. The Boston tea party, followed by Intolerable Acts


What was the fraction of taxes paid by colonists to British citizens?

Average colonists paid 1/20th of the taxes paid by average Londoners.


Describe the abandonment of salutary neglect.

Financial pressure created by 60 years of constant war with France compelled Britain to abandon salutary neglect. This included: Stamp & Sugar Acts, Currency Act, enforced the Navigation Acts, expanded Vice-Admiralty courts, stationing permanent soldiers despite lack of war (culturally unacceptable, and housed/fed through the Quartering Act). These were a startling departure from salutary neglect and shocked the colonists.


What was the response to the Stamp Act?

Nine colonies sent thirty-seven delegates to the Stamp Act Congress. This was the first time that the colonies met collectively to address their imperial relationship with Britain. Rhode Island’s assembly declared the Stamp Act unconstitutional and authorized colonial officials to ignore it. Violence and riots erupted against Crown officials who attempted to enforce the Stamp Act. Colonists boycotted British goods with such zeal that British merchants pressured Parliament to back down. The Stamp Act Congress made public the heart of the colonists’ position: only actual representation (and not virtual representation) is legitimate, so the English Parliament possessed no legitimate political authority over the colonists. Britain repealed the Stamp Act, undermining their authority and leaving the colonies hyper-sensitive to taxation.


What were the Townshend Acts, and what was the response?

Parliament assumed external taxes were alright with the colonists, just not internal. They imposed import duties. A boycott was organized and severely hurt British merchants. They were repealed in 1770 due to financial repercussions: Townshend duties were generating about 21,000 pounds per year, but boycotts were costing British merchants 700,000 pounds.


What were the demographics of Massachusetts in 1769?

By 1769, there were 4,000 Redcoats stationed in Boston, a town of only 15,000 colonists. This means that there was one British solder for every four Boston residents. British regulars comprised over 20 percent of Boston’s population!


What caused the Boston Tea Party?

The British government granted a monopoly to a British tea company so it could sell its cargo of tea in Boston. The royal act actually decreased the price of tea in Boston. This outraged colonists due to regulation of their economy.


What were the intolerable/coercive acts?

A package of four pieces of colonial legislation:
-the Boston Port Act: Parliament closed the Boston harbor until colonists paid for the tea destroyed in the Boston Tea Party and order was restored

-the Massachusetts Government Act radically changed Massachusetts government by giving London power to choose any officials and ban town meetings.

-the Administration of Justice Act arranged for royal officials accused of crimes to be tried in England, making it difficult for anti-English witnesses to appear in court.

-the Quartering act allowed royal governors to quarter troops in unused buildings, if the colonists refused to house troops themselves.


What was the impact of Common Sense?

It sold 500,000 copies, ended the idea that the king would intervene, and belittled the king. It was aimed at the common man.


What are the possible mindsets behind the D of I?

1) expressing the American political creed - Enlightenment thinking prevailed
2) an appeal to France for help


What were the military numbers involved in the revolution?

The greatest number of men that George Washington ever personally commanded at one time in the field was 17,000. He usually commanded a force of around 5,000 to 10,000. ~75,000 British soldiers were stationed from Canada to Florida. Roughly one-third of these were Hessians. The British navy was the largest and most powerful in the world; the new United States of America possessed no true navy warships. The largest battle of the entire war came in August 1776 when 22,000 British soldiers drove Washington and his 10,000 soldiers from Staten Island (near New York City). Washington’s army dropped to only 5,000 to 7,000 soldiers in late 1776, with the enlistment service of 3,000 of these men expiring on December 31. Washington’s army numbered about 10,000 during the 1777-1778 winter at Valley Forge, but 2,500 soldiers died that winter from disease and exposure. About 25,000 Americans died in military service during the war: 8,000 battlefield deaths, 8,000 to 11,500 deaths in POW camps, and 9,000 deaths from disease. This was about 1 percent of the entire population, which makes it the second bloodiest war in U.S. history (if deaths are computed as a percentage of total population), second only to the Civil War.