Causes of American War of Independence

4459 Words Oct 17th, 2009 18 Pages
The Causes of American War of Independence The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), also known as the American War of Independence, was a conflict that erupted between Great Britain and revolutionaries within thirteen British colonies, who declared their independence as the United States of America in 1776. The war was the culmination of the American Revolution, a colonial struggle against political and economic policies of the British Empire. The war eventually widened far beyond British North America; many Native Americans also fought on both sides of the conflict. Throughout the war, the British were able to use their naval superiority to capture and occupy coastal cities, but control of the countryside (where most of the …show more content…
Tens of thousands of slaves escaped to the British lines, although possibly as few as 1,000 served under arms. Many of the rest served as orderlies, mechanics, laborers, servants, scouts and guides, although more than half died in smallpox epidemics that swept the British forces, and a number were driven out of the British lines when food ran low. Despite Dunmore's promises, the majority were not given their freedom. Due to manpower shortages, Washington lifted the ban on black enlistment in the Continental Army in January 1776. All-black units were formed in Rhode Island and Massachusetts; many were slaves promised freedom for serving in lieu of their masters. Another all-black unit came from Haiti with French forces. At least 5,000 black soldiers fought for the Revolutionary cause. Most American Indians east of the Mississippi River were affected by the war, with many communities dividing over the question of how to respond to the conflict. Most Native Americans who joined the fight fought against the United States, since native lands were threatened by expanding American settlement. An estimated 13,000 warriors fought on the British side; the largest group, the Iroquois Confederacy, fielded about 1,500 men. War in the north, 1775–1777 Before the war, Boston, Massachusetts had been the scene of much revolutionary activity, leading to the effective abolition of the provincial government of Massachusetts by the British parliament in
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