HIST 1776: PowerPoint

The French-American
Alliance of 1778
By Alyssa Mitchel
Professor Taylor
Columbus to Clinton: History 1776
Research Process
The Treaty of Alliance: 1778
• France was influenced to join an
alliance with the Americans
• Victory of the Battle of
• Sought revenge against Britain
• May 2, 1776 Louis XVI provided
economic aid for Americans while
John Adams began drafting a
commercial treaty of alliance
• February 1778: Two treaties were
• Amity and Commerce
• Alliance
• As an ally of France, Spain joined
the war in June 1779
The Initial Failures
The Battle of Newport:
Admiral Comte D’Estaing and General
Distraction—Admiral Richard Lord
D’Estaing had to leave to Boston for
General Sullivan--forced to abandon
the fight
Attacks D’Estaing with
The Battle of Savannah:
D’Estaing and his army approached
Savannah before American General
Benjamin Lincoln arrived
Requested British forces to surrender
British didn’t surrender but instead
won the battle only losing 120 soldiers
compared to the loss and injuires of
The Siege of Yorktown-1781
Thesis Draft
Although the Treaty of Alliance of 1778 led to America’s official
independence from Britain in the 1783 Treaty of Paris, this would
not have been possible without the alliance’s initial failures. While
Americans held the belief that they had all of the knowledge and
experience to win the war, their allies believed that the colonists
needed French support as France had a reputable military history.
Therefore, after many disagreements, military leaders learned to
trust and depend on each other, which led to the victory in
• Comparing and contrasting war efforts in the Battles
of Newport and Savannah to Yorktown
• Transformation of military leaders
• Development of Strategies
Lengel, Edward. General George Washington: A Military Life. New York: Random House,
Incorporated. 2005. Print.
Morgan, Edmund S. The Birth of the Republic: 1763-89. Third Edition. Chicago: The University
of Chicago Press. 1992. Print.
Peer Reviewed Articles:
Lee Ann Potter, “Rough journal page documenting ratification and final page of the Treaty
of Paris, 1783,” Social Education 72.5 (2008); 272-277
Ronald E. Huzzard, “George Washington’s Primer For Multinational Operations:
Overlooked Keys to the French-American Victory at Yorktown,” Department of Joint Military
Operations (2004); ii-B-3.
"Siege of Savannah." Son of the South, 2008. Web. 09 Nov. 2011. <http://
"Forming Alliances." The Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary. Franklin & Marshall College, The
Phillips Museum of Art, 2008. Web. 09 Nov. 2011.