Portal:American Revolutionary War

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The American Revolutionary War Portal

Clockwise from top left: Battle of Bunker Hill, Death of Montgomery at Quebec, Battle of Cowpens, "Moonlight Battle"
The American Revolutionary War began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen united former British colonies on the North American continent, and ended in a global war between several European great powers. The war was the culmination of the political American Revolution and intellectual American Enlightenment, whereby the colonists rejected the right of the Parliament of Great Britain to govern them without representation. In 1775, revolutionaries gained control of each of the thirteen colonial governments, set up an alliance called the Second Continental Congress, and formed a Continental Army. Petitions to the king to intervene with the parliament on their behalf resulted in Congress being declared traitors and the states in rebellion the following year. The Americans responded by formally declaring their independence as a new nation, the United States of America, claiming sovereignty and rejecting any allegiance to the British monarchy. In 1777 the Continentals captured a British army, leading to France entering the war on the side of the Americans in early 1778, and evening the military strength with Britain. Spain and the Dutch Republic – French allies – also went to war with Britain over the next two years.

Throughout the war, the British were able to use their naval superiority to capture and occupy coastal cities, but control of the countryside (where 90% of the population lived) largely eluded them due to their relatively small land army. French involvement proved decisive, with a French naval victory in the Chesapeake leading to the surrender of a second British army at Yorktown in 1781. In 1783, the Treaty of Paris ended the war and recognized the sovereignty of the United States over the territory bounded by what is now Canada to the north, Florida to the south, and the Mississippi River to the west.

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Selected picture

Holman, Cape St Vincent.jpg
The moonlight Battle off Cape St. Vincent
Credit: Ctrl-Z
The moonlight Battle off Cape St Vincent, 16 January 1780 by Francis Holman, painted in 1780 shows the Santo Domingo exploding, with Rodney's flagship

Selected biography

Chappel Montgomery full length.jpg
Richard Montgomery (December 2, 1738 – December 31, 1775) was an Irish-born soldier who first served in the British Army. He later became a brigadier-general in the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War and he is most famous for leading the 1775 invasion of Canada.

Montgomery was born and raised in Ireland. In 1754, he enrolled at Trinity College, Dublin, and two years later joined the British army to fight in the French and Indian War. He steadily rose through the ranks, serving in North America and then the Caribbean. After the war he was stationed at Fort Detroit during Pontiac's Rebellion, following which he returned to Britain for health reasons. In 1773, Montgomery returned to the Thirteen Colonies, married Janet Livingston, and began farming.

When the American Revolutionary War broke out, Montgomery took up the Patriot cause, and was elected to the New York Provincial Congress in May 1775. In June 1775, he was commissioned as a Brigadier General in the Continental Army. After Philip Schuyler became too ill to lead the invasion of Canada, Montgomery took over. He captured Fort St. Johns and then Montreal in November 1775, and then advanced to Quebec City where he joined another force under the command of Benedict Arnold. On December 31, he led an attack on the city, but was killed during the battle. His body was found by the British, who gave it an honorable burial. His remains were moved to New York City in 1818.


Selected ships and units

Concorde engages the French ship Engageante in 1794
HMS Concorde was a 32-gun fifth-rate frigate of the Royal Navy. She had previously served in the French Navy under the name Concorde. Built in France in 1777, she entered service with the French early in the American War of Independence, and was soon in action, capturing HMS Minerva in the West Indies. In 1781 she carried vital dispatches between France, North America and the Caribbean that made the Yorktown campaign a success. She remained in French service almost until the end of the war, but was captured by HMS Magnificent in 1783. Not immediately brought into service due to the draw-down in the navy after the end of the war, she underwent repairs and returned to active service under the White Ensign with the outbreak of war with France in 1793. She saw service throughout the French Revolutionary Wars and the Napoleonic Wars before being broken up in 1811.


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From the American Revolutionary War task force of the Military history WikiProject:

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1780 Black Camp RebellionAlbemarle BarracksBattle of Lenud's FerryBattle of Wetzell's MillCarleton's RaidCortlandt SkinnerDaniel Waters (minuteman)Fort DaytonFort Independence (Vermont)HM galley PigotJohn Swift (general)King's Royal Regiment of New YorkMatthias OgdenSamuel Holden ParsonsVolunteers of Ireland
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Battle of Monmouth • Battles in {{Campaignbox American Revolutionary War: Gulf Coast}}
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