Which quality of an army do you think
is most important for success?
A. Size of the army
B. Strong leadership
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D. Enthusiasm for their cause
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C. Advanced technology
Chapter 6 The American
Revolution (1776-1783)
Section 1 The Early Years
What challenges did the American
revolutionaries face at the start of
the war?
The American Revolution
• After the Declaration of
Independence, war was
unavoidable
• Both sides thought the
war would be short
• Patriots thought the
British would give up after
one or two losing battles
• John Adams thought
otherwise “We shall have
a long… and bloody war
to go through”
• The British had great
advantages
British Advantages
• Strongest
navy in the
world
• Experienced,
well trained
army
• Wealth
• Larger
population
• 8 million in
Great Britain
to 2.5 million
in the United
States
Colonists’ Disadvantages
• Lacked a regular
army and strong
navy
• American soldiers
lacked experience
• Short supply of
weapons and
ammunition
• Most were militia
• Fought for a short
period of time before
going home
More Patriot Struggles
• Not all supported
the struggle for
independence
• Some were
neutral
• Quakers would
not participate in
the war
• Many remained
loyal to Britain
The Loyalists
• Loyal to Britain- also called
Tories
• 1 in 5 (20%) were Loyalists
• Some people changed sides
depending on which army
was closer
• Loyalist support was biggest
in the Carolinas and Georgia
• Weakest in New England
Why were people Loyalists?
• Some were members
of the Anglican church
(headed by the king)
• Others depended on
the British for their
jobs
• Others feared disorder
of forming a new
government
• Others didn’t see why
the colonies wanted
independence
• One Loyalist
complained: No other
country “faced a
rebellion arising from
such trivial causes”
African Americans in the War
• Some sided with the
Loyalists
• The Royal Governor
of Virginia, Lord
Dunmore, announced
that enslaved people
who fought on the
British side would be
freed
• Many answered the
call
Patriot Advantages
• Fighting on own land
and fought with
determination to
protect it
• Britain was fighting
in a faraway land
• Britain relied on
mercenaries (hired
soldiers) called
Hessians
• Better leadership
(George
Washington)
One of the Patriots’ greatest
advantages was which of the
following?
A. A larger population
B. Mercenaries fighting
on their side
C. A stronger navy
D. George Washington as
their military leader
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Raising an army
• The Americans
transferred the power to
the Continental
Congress
• The American
Revolution was really
like 13 separate wars
• Each state pursued their
own interests
• Continental Congress
had a hard time enlisting
soldiers and raising
money to fight the war
• Each state was to
recruit (enlist) soldiers
More of Raising an Army
• At first men signed up for
one year of service
• Washington convinced
some to enlist “for the
whole term of the war”
• Officers were also hard to
recruit
• The best officers were
veterans of previous
wars
• Women also fought with
the Patriot forces
– Molly Pitcher and others
Battle on Long Island
• Summer of 1776, Britain
sent 32,000 troops across
the Atlantic under General
William Howe
• Patriots had fewer than
20,000 troops
• Continental Army suffered
serious defeat
• Nathan Hale proved himself
a hero at Long Island
• Hale spied on the British
disguising himself as a
Dutch schoolteacher
• The British figured out his
true identity and hanged him
• Right before his hanging
Hale said, “I only regret that
I have but one life to lose for
my country”
More of the Battle of Long Island
• Americans fought with
bravery, but ran short
of supplies
• A British soldier wrote
that many of the Patriot
soldiers killed had not
been wearing shoes,
socks, or jackets
• “They are also in great
want of blankets,”
predicting that the
rebels would suffer
during the winter
• Washington retreated
to Manhattan and then
to Pennsylvania
A Low Point
• Patriots faced near
collapse during the
winter of 1776-1777
• Size of the army
dwindled as terms of
service ended
• Others ran away
• Washington pleaded with
the Continental
Congress for new troops
• Washington wanted to
allow free blacks to fight,
but many in the South
felt uncomfortable giving
them guns
African Americans Join the Fight
• As more soldiers were
needed, many states
ignored the ban and
enlisted African Americans
• Rhode Island had an allAfrican regiment in 1778
• By the end of the war, all
states except South
Carolina had enlisted
African Americans to fight
• As many as 5,000 joined
the Patriots including
Lemuel Hayes and Peter
Salem
• African Americans joined
because they believed in
the Patriot cause or they
needed money
Historians estimate that how many
African Americans joined the Patriots
to fight?
A. 500
B. 1,000
C. 5,000
D. 10,000
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D
The British
• Settled in New York for the
winter
• Left some troops in
Princeton and Trenton,
New Jersey
• Washington saw a way to
catch the British off guard
• December 25th, 1776
Washington and 2,400
troops crossed the icy
Delaware river to Trenton
and surprised the Hessians
• Washington then marched
to Princeton and drove out
the British
• “Late successes have
turned the scale and now
they are all liberty-mad
again”
A British Plan for Victory
• The British planned on taking
Albany, New York
• Wanted to control the Hudson
River
• This would separate New
England from the Middle
Colonies
• Involved a three-pronged attack
• 1. General John Burgoyne
would lead 8,000 troops south
from Canada
• 2. Lt. Colonel Barry St. Leger
would move east from Lake
Ontario
• 3. General Howe would move
north from New York City
• The three groups would meet
at Albany and destroy the
Patriot troops
The British Capture Philadelphia
• Howe won battles near
and in Philadelphia in
September 1777
• The Continental
Congress was forced to
flee
• Washington then
attacked the British at
Germantown, but had to
withdraw
• Howe decided to spend
the winter in Philadelphia
instead of going to
Albany
• Howe wanted to stay
close to Washington’s
troops
Patriots slow the British
• St. Leger’s forces approached
Fort Stanwix, New York
• Benedict Arnold forced the
British to retreat
• General Burgoyne’s troops were
not making much progress
• Gentleman Johnny Burgoyne
traveled with 30 wagons of
luxury goods
• Americans also cut down trees
to block their path
• Burgoyne needed supplies so
he sent 800 troops to
Bennington, Vermont
• The Green Mountain Boys
attacked and defeated them
• Burgoyne retreated to Saratoga,
New York in October
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
The
Battle
of
Saratoga
The British forces Burgoyne
expected did not arrive
St. Leger was defeated and
Howe was still in Philadelphia
American troops under
General Horatio Gates
blocked Burgoyne’s path to
the south
Burgoyne was surrounded by
a large army, but decided to
attack
The American’s held together
and forced Burgoyne to
surrender
Howe then resigned as
commander of British troops
in America and was replaced
by General Henry Clinton
Saratoga was a turning point
in the war, Patriot victory now
seemed possible
At which battle was the British plan to
separate the colonies foiled?
A. The Battle of Saratoga
B. The Battle of Trenton
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D. The Battle of Burgoyne
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B.
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C. The Battle of Philadelphia
What challenges did the American
revolutionaries face at the start of
the war?
-Americans had fewer people and less wealth
-They lacked a regular army and a strong
navy
-They lacked military experience, weapons,
and ammunition
-Not all Americans supported the cause
-Some Americans fought for the British
Chapter 6 Section 1 Quiz
Enslaved African Americans who fought
on the British side were given
land.
freedom.
money.
guns.
.
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B.
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D.
Who disguised herself as a man so
she could fight with the army?
A. Deborah
Sampson
B. Margaret Corbin
C. Molly Pitcher
D. Betsy Ross
s
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Few patriots believed ____________ when
he stated, “We shall have a long and bloody
war to go through.”
A. Alexander
Hamilton
B. George
Washington
C. John Adams
D. Thomas Paine
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The first state to have an allAfrican American regiment was
South Carolina.
New York.
Georgia.
Rhode Island.
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So
A.
B.
C.
D.
On October 17, 1777, General John
Burgoyne surrendered to the Americans at
Philadelphia.
Trenton.
Saratoga.
Concord.
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